World Food Day: Obesity becoming a major problem in South Africa

World Food Day is a day of action dedicated to addressing global hunger and food wastage.

However, Florian Kroll, a researcher, project manager and PhD Candidate at the Institute for Poverty, Land and Agrarian Studies says there are other concerns to be looked at besides hunger and food wastage.

He says obesity is becoming a major problem attributed to the kind of food people eat and the choices people make daily determined by the lack of money.

Kroll also talks about the rise of consumption of ultra-processed food as being the big part of the issue. He says in South Africa one of the widely consumed street food is the kota where the ingredients are produced industrially and processed.

It is usually formulated in a way that is appealing to the taste buds and made out of the ingredients that are cheap to produce so that they can be produced in large and make a profit.

Florian Kroll, Researcher

The problem is that there is high level of sugar, high level of unhealthy fats, salt and different kinds of addictives and colourants. People consume them because they are possibly cheap and packaged very attractively

Florian Kroll, Researcher

A lot of poor people don't have the money nor the time to be preparing food all the time so these ultra-processed food respond to a particular need in the market but they are also causing them massive health issues.

Florian Kroll, Researcher

In South Africa we have 68% of women in urban areas that are obese or overweight.

Florian Kroll, Researcher

To hear the rest of the conversation with Florian Kroll, listen below:


This article first appeared on CapeTalk : World Food Day: Obesity becoming a major problem in South Africa


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