Go to National Library of New Zealand Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa
Volume 15, 1882
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– 507 –

(5.) Abundance of wholesome Food.

The cheapness of breadstuffs and potatoes and the low price of meat, combined with general prosperity, give to all abundance of good wholesome food. The low cost of the production of the raw material offers scant inducement for adulteration. Good milk is cheaply bought in the largest towns. This constant supply of sound wholesome food maintains a healthy condition of body, which wards off most of the diseases arising from defective or mal-nutrition.

– 508 –

Experts in social science aver that the death-rate of large classes in Europe is attributable to their being habitually underfed. The enormously high death-rate of those earning the lowest wages (such as workers in silk earning only 2s. 7½d. a week; kid glovers, 2s. 2d.; stocking weavers, 2s. 6½d.; needlewomen, 2s. 7d.), proves that long-continued semi-starvation is an important factor in increasing the death-rate. In France among the rich 68 per 1,000 of all deaths were due to tubercular diseases, but amongst the poor and underfed the rate rose to 230 in 1,000.