“Do you know that the money spent in the United States for candy in one year is double the amount required to feed Belgium for one year?” This statement is not from a modern anti-obesity polemic, but rather from the World War I pamphlet A Sugar Program: Household Conservation Policy to Meet the Sugar Situation for the Summer of 1918.
Why was there a sugar situation? When the United States entered World War I, ships were needed to transport soldiers and supplies across the ocean. Since much of the U.S. supply of sugar was imported, the war interrupted the supply chain of sugar.
Ships crossing over to the United Kingdom with supplies also faced the dreaded German U-boats, which sank large numbers of the Allied merchant fleet when Germany declared unrestricted submarine warfare in 1917. This danger threatened to worsen the Allied food situation in Europe, which was already severe. The woman in the poster above is literally draining away resources that the Allies need to win the war.
To inform U.S. citizens on why they were being asked to ration sugar (2 pounds per month or 6 teaspoons per day) and to provide them with information on how to manage without sugar, the … [ Read all ]
Posted by Hilary on June 22, 2011, under - World War I, Recipes, What's Cooking Wednesdays.
Tags: Allied troops, Belgium, blockade, candy, conservation, herbert hoover, rations, submarines, sugar problem, U-boats, unrestriced submarine warfare, USFA, woodrow wilson, world war i
To celebrate our new exhibit “What’s Cooking, Uncle Sam?” we are featuring a food-related blog post every Wednesday. Today’s post comes from Christopher Zarr at the National Archives in New York City.
The National Archives maintains the primary source documents of the U.S. Food Administration (USFA). Thousands of documents illustrate the local sacrifices and quality of life on the home front during World War I. The documents of the National Archives at New York City detail the actions taken by the USFA in New York, New Jersey, and Puerto Rico.
The Federal Government tried to influence local neighborhoods. In the New York City market, particular attention was paid to the multicultural nature of the city.
Pamphlets were translated for Jewish and Italian immigrants to explain “Why Shouldn’t We Eat What We Want?” and to support the benefits of drinking milk in “Food for Children.” The New York food board also created an exhibit at Grand Central Terminal to show why limiting wheat, meat, fats, and sugar would not be a detriment to your health.
Some of the most fascinating documents to come from our records are recipe pamphlets. Thousands of these recipe brochures were distributed throughout the city. With titles such as “Without Wheat” and “Potato Possibilities,” the Federal Food Board of New York provided ingredient substitutions for well-known recipes to help … [ Read all ]
Posted by Hilary on May 25, 2011, under - World War I, What's Cooking Wednesdays.
Tags: Christopher Zarr, federal government, immigrants, pamphlets, potato, rations, recipes, USFA, wheat, world war i