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Sometimes New Zealand makes me sad

I think of New Zealand and some times get sad about it all, I’ve been meaning to make a site about it. For now we can just use this post…

The New Zealand government did a study in 2019 to measure food security for children in New Zealand.

What did we find out?

1 in 5 children lived in moderate to severe food insecurity

But what does that mean?

Well there were some crucial questions asked when trying to measure something so broad, they generally covered:

  • Children’s caregivers were able to afford to provide them food
  • Children eating less variety of foods because of lack of money
  • Caregivers feeling stressed because of not having enough money for food

Well 1 in 5 New Zealanders were likely to:

  • Experience barriers to accessing health care
  • Eat breakfast at home for 4 or fewer days a week
  • Have a caregiver who’s health is fair/poor
  • Have medicated asthma or eczema
  • Have a care giver who is not only stressed but doesn’t have someone to turn to for support (Turns out the team of 5 million doesn’t apply here)

Can’t we do better? How many people is that actually?

The government deemed children to be anyone 14 years or younger (Everyone knows that when you turn 15 you become an adult and food is easy to come by)

If we look at the what stats nz estimates based on the 2018 census we have 946,000 children in New Zealand

The 2019 report notes that three in five children lived in a household that did not report any issues. So let’s take the higher estimate of 378,400 children currently needing our support.

In 2020 the budget was announced, we were going to feed 200,000 kids at a cost of $110 million a year. This is nice, now we just have to worry about breakfast and dinner for those kids, and then all meals for the other 178,000 children

Let’s play with the numbers here, if we want to have all children feed. We’ll make some assumptions, lunch, dinner, and breakfast are the same cost as the current government cost and the cost will grow linearly (disregarding the ability to buy food in bulk)

So to cover the first set of children we get 3 meals * $110 Million a meal = $330 million, we’ll then cover the 178,000 children, $333 million * 0.9) = $300 million

So we need $630 million to help stop children being hungry in New Zealand

Oh and all the side effects like lowering household stress, asthma and eczema

  • Amount of houses sold in January 2021: 4,957
  • Amount of houses sold in December 2020: 8,935
  • Amount of houses sold in December 2020: 8,830

Median house price in New Zealand: $730,000

This means in 3 months there has been 16.5 billion dollars of housing sold. We would need to tax property sales at 3.8% to cover this cost in 3 months…

We could easily solve hunger for kids in New Zealand.

We just choose not to.

Let’s pretend that taxing housing is not an option

According to Love Food Hate Waste we waste $1.17 billion a year on food we throw out.

We as a country could feed everyone, we just don’t