Photo Essay Comparison Of Food Consumption

This photographic report exposes the proliferation of processed foods in the Western diet and in the diets of many developing countries the world over. Is it any wonder that we are seeing increases in diet & lifestyle related diseases? What are your thoughts?

The project

These images are from the book 'Hungry Planet: What the World Eats' by Peter Menzel and Faith D'Aluision. It's an inspired idea: to better understand the human diet, explore what culturally diverse families eat for a week. Their portraits feature pictures of each family with a week's worth of food purchases. We soon learn that diet is determined by largely uncontrollable forces like poverty, conflict and globalization, which can bring change with startling speed. Thus, cultures can move, sometimes in a single jump, from traditional diets to the vexed plenty of global food production. People have more to eat and, too often, eat more of nutritionally questionable food. And their health suffers.



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The great global food gap: Families around the world photographed with weekly shopping as they reveal cost ranges from £3.20 to £320

  • Snapshots of families' weekly shop from countries around the world shows the food gulf between nations

By Daily Mail Reporter

Published: 18:32 GMT, 5 May 2013 | Updated: 11:18 GMT, 9 May 2013

A study of what 30 families living around the world eat in one week shows the huge gulf between the diets of different nations.

Crisps, biscuits and chocolate treats dominate the shopping basket of the Baintons from Britain who spend an average of £155 every week to feed their family of four.

Other items on their shopping list include ready meals such as baked beans as well as convenience goods like ketchup, teabags and mayonnaise.

These pictures of their weekly food shop shows the sharp contrast between the eating habits of those in the UK and others around the globe.

Britain: The Bainton family of Cllingbourne Ducis spend £155 on their weekly food shop. They list their favourite foods as avocado, prawn cocktail and chocolate fudge cake with cream

Chad, North Africa: The Aboubakar family from Darfur, Sudan, spend £37 a week on food to feed six people

Japan: The Ukita family from Kodaira City with their £200 weekly food shop

Egypt: The Ahmed family from Cairo who spend around £43 a week on food

Luxembourg: The Kuttan-Kasses of Erpeldange who spend around £298 pounds a week on food

At a refugee camp in drought-hit Chad, north Africa, six members of the Aboubakar family are forced to last an entire week on a few bags of grain, air-dried mutton and a few jerrycans of water, costing around £37 a week.

Families in Ecuador, South America, such as the Aymes, also struggle to survive on their measly provisions.

They have just £20 to buy a week's worth of food - usually cabbage and yams for soup - to feed a family of nine.

But in other developed countries, the shopping lists resemble those of the UK.

America: The Revis family from North Carolina spend £220 on the weekly food shop which includes several fast food take-aways

Australia: The Browns pictured with a week's worth of food costing £242

Poland: The Sobczynscy family from Konstancin-Jeziorna who spend around £99 on their weekly shop

Mongolia: The Batsuuri family of Ulaanbaatar who spend around £25 a week on food

India: The Patkars of Ujjain who spend around £25 a week on food

Mali: The Natomos of Kouakourou spend around £16 on food

The Revis family in North Carolina, America, spend £220-a-week buying fast food such as pizza, Burger King and McDonald's to feed their family of four.

In Japan, the Ukita family spend £200 on their weekly shop which includes large amounts of expensive fish to cook dishes such as sashimi.

The Manzos family in Italy appear to have a more balanced diet with the fish, pasta and fresh fruit and vegetables appearing on their weekly £167 shopping list.

But the Melanders from Bargteheide, Germany beat them all with £320 spent on their weekly shop to feed four people.

It is world's away from what the Namgay family from Shingkhey Village in Buhtan have to spend to feed 13 people - a mere £3.20.

Italy: The Manzos family spend £167 a week on food including fish, pasta, fruit, vegetables and soft drinks

Ecuador: The Ayme family pictured with a week's worth of food costing £20 at their home in Tingo

Kuwait: The Al Haggan family from Kuwait City with their £140 weekly shop

Guatemala: The Mendozas of Todos Santos who spend around £48 a week on their weekly food shop

Canada: The Melansons of Iqaluit, Nunavut Territory, who spend around £220 a week on food

These unique snapshots of global eating habits are the subject of a new book, The Hungry Planet byPeter Menzel.

Menzel visited 30 families in 24 countries to research the book with his wife Faith D'Aluisio, who said: 'We hope this is a culinary atlas of the planet at a time of extraordinary change.'

Each family's profile includes a detailed description of their weekly food purchases and a portrait of the entire family surrounded by a week's worth of groceries. 

Bhutan: The Namgay family from Shingkhey Village with their weekly shop costing around £3.20

Germany: The Melander family from Bargteheide who spend around £320 on their weekly shop

Mexico: The Casales family from Cuernavaca who spend around £115 a week on food

China: The Dong family from Beijing who spend around £99 on food every week

United States: The Caven family from California who spend around £103 a week on food

France: The Le Moines of Montreuil who spend around £269 every week on food

Greenland: The Madsens of Cap Hope spend around £177 a week on food

Turkey: The Celiks of Istanbul who spend around £93 a week on food

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