Chronic Hunger, Chronic Terror: Agrarian Modernization And The Struggle For Sustainability In Guatemala, 1944-1980


Blessed with plentiful sunshine and rich soils, Guatemala exports large quantities of coffee, bananas, sugar and more to the United States, Canada, and Europe. Our grocery stores are stocked with fresh tropical produce, but few consumers are aware of the social and environmental costs of the food we consume. The immense productivity of Guatemala’s export sector is underwritten by deforestation, the heavy use of pesticides and fertilizers, and the exploitation of workers. Guatemala also has one of the highest rates of chronic malnutrition in the Americas: many rural Indigenous families subsist on a simple diet of corn and beans that lacks adequate protein and key vitamins.

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