Every year, we take a snapshot of world progress in the fight against chronic hunger. This year, the picture is looking better, but it’s still not good enough.
Some 842 million people still suffer from chronic hunger, according to the State of Food Insecurity in the World (SOFI 2013), published Tuesday by the three Rome-based U.N. food agencies.
Reducing the proportion of undernourished people by half until 2015 was one of the Millennium Development Goals that the international community set in 2000. It will not be reached: At least 870 million people worldwide – and one child in five – still go hungry; this in a world where we already produce enough food today to feed nine billion people in 2050.
Agriculture as it exists today developed over 11,000 years of rather remarkable climate stability. It has evolved to maximize production within that climate system. Now, suddenly, the climate is changing. With each passing year, the agricultural system is becoming more out of sync with the climate system.
Under the leadership of Brazilian Director General (DG) José Graziano da Silva, the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) has been engaged in a process of deep reform meant to make the organisation leaner and more effective in the fight against hunger.
Judging by the accolades and diplomas handed out to 11 Latin American and Caribbean countries by FAO, it would be easy to conclude that the region has taken a giant leap towards eradicating hunger.
As India’s Parliament prepares to pass a bill to provide heavily subsidised food to 810 million people, there are misgivings over its implementation through a notoriously corrupt public distribution system (PDS).
Since its founding in 2007 to help developing nations fight poverty, hunger, illiteracy, disease and gender discrimination, the Millennium Development Goals Achievement Fund (MDG-F) has financed about 130 joint programmes in 50 countries.
The growing consensus, momentum and commitment to eradicate world hunger may seem overly ambitious in view of the slow progress in reducing the number of hungry people in the world in recent decades.
Thirty-eight countries were recognised for the first time on Sunday by the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organisation for cutting in half the prevalence of people suffering from undernourishment, one of three targets under the first Millennium Development Goal
“If there was enough political will to defeat hunger, we would defeat it right now - immediately,” says Enrique Yeves, chief of corporate communications at the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO).
As the United Nations prepares to launch an ambitious post-2015 development agenda, the message from one of its Rome-based agencies is unequivocal: the eradication of hunger and malnutrition should remain a high priority when the current Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) end in 2015.
Twenty-nine-year-old Andrzej W. and his partner lived for almost a year off of food found in the trash bin of the upscale supermarket Piotr i Pawel in Muranow, a neighbourhood near the centre of the Polish capital Warsaw. And they ate in style.
With less than three years before a 2015 deadline, the developing world is largely expected to miss one of the U.N.'s key Millennium Development Goals (MDGs): halving the number of people living in extreme poverty and hunger.
The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) is convinced there is sufficient global capacity to produce enough food to adequately feed the world's seven billion people.