“They’re out there providing for everybody else’s family and barely bring home enough to take care of their own.”America is a land of plenty as well as a place of tragic irony.
Food insecurity is a growing problem in some of the nations richest agricultural regions. Food security is a condition that “exists when all people, at all times, have physical and economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food to meet their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life”, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). Household food security exists when all members, at all times, have access to enough food for an active, healthy life. The United Nations identified the basic human right to food in 1948 as the foundation that provides access to all other rights.
California’s San Joaquin Valley lies south of Sacramento between San Francisco and Los Angeles. 12.8% of the entire agricultural production in the United States comes out of California. Most of that 12.8% production of fresh foods occurs in the San Joaquin Valley.
Oscar Ortiz works in the valley as a planter and harvester making $170 a week. He struggles to support his family on his $800 a month government food stamps. America is a land of opportunity but it is a work in progress. Economic justice is an ideal but certainly it remains an imperfect reality.