History has shown us time and again that the point of chaos arrives in society when people have nothing to eat or feed their families.
While this may conjure images of the desperate conflict that have crippled many places such as that caused by malnutrition in Africa, the reality is some of our own people suffer from a lack of nutrient-dense food and environmental damage is making it worse.
Inequality sees the well-off driving cars, eating food that has been imported from halfway around the world and using a lot of electricity. Meanwhile at the other end of the scale, our Child Poverty Monitor report shows that a disturbing 17% of our children suffer material hardship that includes eating less fruit and vegetables and enduring the cold rather than using a heater to save money.
It is no surprise at all that the poor endure worse health conditions. I have seen kids turn up at schools where we work with a bottle of coke and a bag of chips before. This not only negatively impacts their health and teeth, but refined sugar makes them unable to concentrate, often effecting others learning.
Too much carbon dioxide in the air is now proven to be threatening global food security. This has been called "the most significant health threat of climate change" by Dr Samuel Myers from the Harvard School of Public Health.
Nutrient levels in crops such as soybeans and rice are reducing when exposed to too much carbon.
When you compare carbon emissions across countries it is no surprise to see the trend of the wealthier countries emitting much more than those that are more likely to starve.
So what can we do about it?
Learning about nutrient-dense food is a great start. So teaching people how to grow it will help to curb the trend against lack of nutrients and obviously reduction of carbon emissions is key.
I am rather proud to sit on a as a trustee for the Hand Over A Hundy Trust (which teaches families how to grow food in their backyards through mentors) alongside Kay Baxter, who is one of New Zealands leading organic gardeners.
Baxter is very passionate about curbing the current trend of industrial food production (which strips out the nutrients) and is doing her bit by running New Zealand's largest organic heritage seed saving organisation, the Koanga Institute, which also educates people on this issue.
The other obvious solution is to reduce carbon emissions and take the pressure of crops before this becomes a widespread catastrophe. Again, growing your own food is an excellent way to do this, but also, maybe we should shut off more of our roads to cars and make public spaces more bicycle and bus friendly? I think that would increase alternative transport.
What do you think?