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The latest food security and nutrition report paints a grim picture. Three IFAD experts react to the shocking figures
Sunday, 2022/07/24 | 07:52:04

IFAD July 6 2022

 

The latest State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World (SOFI) report shows that rather than moving towards the 2030 goal of zero hunger, ever more people are hungry.

 

Jointly published by FAOIFADUNICEFWFP, and WHO, the numbers in the report paint a grim picture. In 2021, as many as 828 million were affected by hunger—an increase of about 46 million since 2020 and 150 million since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

Almost 3.1 billion people could not afford a healthy diet in 2020. As the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and the war in Ukraine drive up inflation and reduce people’s purchasing power, it is more important than ever for governments to support agriculture in ways that reduces the cost of a healthy diet.

 

On the back of these disheartening results, three IFAD experts give their reactions to the report.

 

“The world is far off-track to achieving SDG 2.”- Joyce Njoro, Lead Technical Specialist, Nutrition

 

The SOFI report underlines the stark realities of the state of food and nutrition security in the world today. More people are hungry. More people are food insecure. Billions of people cannot afford a healthy diet. While there has been some progress on stunting and exclusive breastfeeding, anaemia among women of reproductive age has increased. In short, the world is far off-track to achieving SDG 2 on zero hunger and eradicating all forms of malnutrition.

 

At the same time, inequality is widening, with developing countries, countries in fragile situations, rural areas, and women being disproportionately affected by food and nutrition insecurity. While COVID-19 is a major driver, climate change is also compounding these issues. The war in Ukraine and its impacts across the globe will inevitably worsen the 2022 outlook unless drastic measures are taken now.

 

While the report’s suggestion to repurpose agricultural policies is interesting, low-income countries have fewer options to do so without some form of trade-off. These are also the countries most affected by hunger and malnutrition, as well as the impacts of climate change and conflict. Since there is no “one size fits all” solution, a combination of policy repurposing options should be considered for low- and middle-income countries.  

 

As the deadline to meet the SDG targets fast approaches, and with the bulk of the work still ahead, it is essential that we strengthen our collaborative efforts with governments. A concerted effort is needed to protect the gains achieved in previous years and reinforce the resilience of the poorest and most vulnerable people in the world. 

 

See: https://www.ifad.org/en/web/latest/-/the-latest-food-security-and-nutrition-report-paints-a-grim-picture.-three-ifad-experts-react-to-the-shocking-figures?fromhp

 

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