Famine food

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Breads made of orache and bran, fried in machine oil, were used as food in besieged Leningrad

A famine food or poverty food is any inexpensive or readily available food used to nourish people in times of hunger and starvation, whether caused by extreme poverty such as during economic depression; by natural disasters, such as drought; or by war or genocide.

Foods associated with famine need not be nutritionally deficient, or unsavoury. People who eat famine food in large quantity over a long period of time may become averse to it over time. In times of relative affluence, these foods may become the targets of social stigma and rejection.

The characterization of a foodstuff as "famine" or "poverty" food is primarily social. For example lobster and other crustaceans may be considered poverty food in some societies and luxury food in others depending on periods.


A number of foodstuffs have been strongly associated with famine, war, or times of hardship throughout history:

See also[edit]


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  3. ^ McBride, Doreen (8 February 2018). "The Little Book of Fermanagh". History Press – via Google Books.
  4. ^ Gribben, Arthur (1 March 1999). The Great Famine and the Irish Diaspora in America. Univ of Massachusetts Press. p. 31 – via Internet Archive. charlock famine.
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  6. ^ "Бурьян, крапива и лебеда. На одном из харьковских хлебозаводов выпекли "голодоморский" хлеб", ATN Kharkiv.
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  9. ^ "Broto de Palma na culinária nordestina (Palma shoots in northeastern cuisine) GUEDES, Claudet Coelho. Federal University of Campina Grande. Access on January 15th, 2016". Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2016-01-15.
  10. ^ Romero-Frias, Xavier. "Eating on the Islands - As times have changed, so has the Maldives' unique cuisine and culture". Himalmag. 26 (2) – via www.academia.edu.
  11. ^ Yves Guinand and Dechassa Lemessa, "Wild-Food Plants in Southern Ethiopia: Reflections on the role of 'famine-foods' at a time of drought" Archived 2010-10-11 at the Wayback Machine UN-OCHA Report, March 2000 (accessed 15 January 2009)
  12. ^ Ahmed, Badawi Ibrahim (1991). "Famine foods in eastern regions of the Sudan" (PDF). IAEA. MS thesis, Agriculture, Univ Khartoum. Retrieved 23 April 2017.
  13. ^ "What it's like to eat a tarantula spider". CNN Travel. 2017-02-01. Retrieved 2018-04-22.