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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Year of Plenty

Stuffed and Starved - Visualizing World Food Consumption


A friend passed along this interesting visualization of the world's calorie consumption. Below is a screen grab showing the U.S. leading the pack in calories consumed. It's interesting to see that the whole western world appears to be eating too many calories while much of Africa is getting too few calories. It reminds me of Raj Patel's appropriately titled book, Stuffed and Starved, which I've got on my reading list for next year. 


The veracity of a data on per capita calorie consumption of Americans may be overstated. While the infographic relies on UN data, the USDA has a more conservative estimate in the most recent Dietary Guidelines where they state:

On the basis of national survey data, the average calorie intake among women and men older than age 19 years are estimated to be 1,785 and 2,640 calories per day, respectively. While these estimates do not appear to be excessive, the numbers are difficult to interpret because survey respondents, especially individuals who are overweight or obese, often under report dietary intake. Well-controlled studies suggest that the actual number of calories consumed may be higher than these estimates.

Maybe the reality is somewhere in-between the UN estimate and the USDA survey results.

Year of Plenty

The Year of Plenty blog was created by Craig Goodwin in the winter of 2008 to chronicle the experiences of his family as they sought to consume everything local, used, homegrown or homemade. That journey was a wonderful introduction to people and movements in the Spokane area who are seeking the welfare of the community through local foods, farmers markets, community gardens, sustainable transportation, and more fulfilling and just patterns of consumption. In 2009 and beyond the blog will continue to report on these relationships and practices, all through the eyes of a family with young children. Craig manages the Millwood Farmers' Market, is a Master Food Preserver and Pastor at Millwood Presbyterian Church. Craig can be reached at