How Important is Food Freedom?

Last night 60 Minutes aired an interview between Anderson Cooper and a gentleman named  Shin Dong-hyuk. Shin was born in captivity in North Korea and had never experienced life outside the prison compound much less North Korea.  Shin eventually came into contact with a prisoner who had lived on the outside and it opened his eyes to new possibilities.  I found this exchange between Cooper and Shin remarkable:

Shin: The most important thought was that a prisoner like me could eat chicken and pork if I were able to escape the barbed wires. 
Cooper: I've heard people define freedom in many ways. I've never heard anyone define it as broiled chicken. 
Shin: I still think of freedom in that way.
Cooper: Really?! That's what freedom means to you?
Shin: People can eat what they want. It could be the greatest gift from God. 
Cooper.: You were ready to die just to get a good meal?
Shin: Yes.

One might have thought it was the regular beatings or the forced witness to murder that would have motivated Shin to escape.  But the biggest driver seemed to be his desire to freely eat.