Everyone has to eat.
On Saturday, approximately 100 people arrived at the Carolyn P. Brown auditorium in the UC for a screening of the film "A Place at the Table," an event hosted by the UT Food Policy Council.
The documentary, directed by Kristi Jacobson and Lori Silverbush, addressed the issues of hunger and food insecurity in the United States.
"The movie brought a problem that seemed so distant much closer to home," Matt Guenther, sophomore in soil science, said.
The film follows three individuals from various parts of the country and stages of life who struggle with hunger.
"This film might make you angry. It might make you sad," said Bill Williams, who introduced the film on behalf of several organizations that are involved in the fight against hunger.
Despite having more food than any other country, 50 million residents face the serious reality of food insecurity in America. One in four of those residents is a child.
For overweight children like Tremonica, one of the documentary's subjects, the trouble can stem from eating the wrong kinds of food. Healthy foods are significantly more expensive than foods high in sugar and calories from fat, creating a disparity between what income groups can afford to eat nutritiously.
Since the '80s, fruit and vegetable prices have risen by 40 percent. Almost 24 million Americans live in food deserts, where there is no access to fresh produce.
The documentary also follows Barbie, a single mother from a ghetto in Pennsylvania, and a group of low-income mothers struggling to convince Congress to pass legislation that will help them feed their families.
The film encouraged viewers to take action against hunger in the United States.
After the film, a panel of five people from organizations like Second Harvest Food Bank and From Farm to Fork held a discussion and answered questions. The panel revealed that Knoxville is the 17th hungriest city in America.
The problem, then, is an immediate – not obscure – threat.
"When the panel after the movie discussed some of the worries, it became even more clear how present these food policy issues are in Knox County and all over East Tennessee," Guenther said.