The New Gold

  • Interest Level: Grade 6 - Grade 12
  • Reading Level: Grade 7

Did you know starvation kills more people every year than AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis combined? Around the world, millions of people go to bed hungry every night. Farmers and ranchers produce enough food to feed everyone, but much of that food does not get to the people who need it most. In some places, food has become a precious commodity—almost like gold.

In this book, author Kathlyn Gay explores the complicated interaction between food, business, politics, and the environment. She examines the international food aid system; giant “factory farms,” which grow and slaughter animals using assembly-line techniques; and the genetic engineering of seeds, plants, and animals. These systems and practices promise to get more food to the people who need it—but the promises don’t always pan out. Worse, many modern agricultural practices are harmful to the environment, to workers who product the food, and even to consumers who eat it. Gay explains that food politics will only become more complicated as Earth’s climate grows warmer, bringing rising sea levels, shifting growing seasons, and shrinking freshwater supplies.

Format Your Price Add
Interest Level Grade 6 - Grade 12
Reading Level Grade 7
Genre Social Studies, Young Adult
Copyright 2013
Publisher Lerner Publishing Group
Imprint Twenty-First Century Books ™
Language English
Number of Pages 96
Publication Date 2015-08-01
Reading Counts! Level 11.5
Text Type Informational/Explanatory
BISACS YAN051120, YAN024020, YAN014000
Dewey 338.1'9
Graphics Full-color illustrations
Dimensions 7 x 10
Lexile 1150
Features Bibliography/further reading, Glossary, Index, Reviewed, Sidebars, Source notes, Starred Reviews, and Websites



“An informative, well documented resource on a timely topic.” —starred, Booklist


“[Food: The New Gold] is ideal for school reports or other assignments on this topic, and middle school readers will find themselves engrossed once they begin reading this honest and interesting text.” —VOYA

Kirkus Reviews

“A sobering, thought-provoking discussion that provides, yes, much food for thought.” —Kirkus Reviews

School Library Journal

“Gay presents a solid introduction to the science, politics, and social concerns surrounding food and its production. Myriad issues are discussed, including such current topics as genetically modified foods, seed saving, agribusiness, and many, many more that affect individuals looking to eat more conscientiously as well as those trying to eradicate global hunger.”—School Library Journal

Author: Kathlyn Gay

Kathlyn Gay has been writing professionally since the day her daugher was born in 1957, selling her first article after she got out of the hospital. Now with over 100 books published, including "first readers," middle grade and young adult books, encyclopedias, teacher manuals, and portions of textbooks, she still finds her life enriched by writing nonfiction work focusing on social and environmental issues, culture, and history. In recent years, she has collaborated (primarily by email) with family members across the country, sons Martin and Douglas Gay and daughter Karen Hamilton. She's married to Arthur L. Gay, a retired educator. They have lived in Illinois, California, Indiana, and now Florida. Family members include two grandchildren, Nissa Beth Gay in California and Dakota Sandoval-Gay in Washington state.