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Examining Food Aid Reform Debate

Noting the proposed reform to the U.S. food aid program contained in President Obama’s FY 2014 budget request, Hannah Laufer-Rottman, executive director of Palms for Life Fund, a non-profit that promotes a global alliance to end poverty and hunger, writes in the Chicago Council on Global Affair’s “Global Food For Thought” blog, “While the goal of reducing hunger in the world continues to be a key strategic goal of this country, the effectiveness of the policy will hinge on the application of a global, regional and country-by-country understanding of how complexities can work for or against the issue.” She lists six “complexities” the key elements of the policy will have to address, notes several questions that arise “when we look at the underlying context of the discussion on international food aid,” and states, “All the above opens another level of discussion that policy makers and the Obama administration cannot ignore if we intend to further the debate into a workable proposal. Such discussion takes into account the realities of international trade, fair trade among nations, and regulation of global food markets and food prices” (5/9).