Society 15:10 13/07/2021 World

Pandemic year marked by spike in world hunger – UN report

There was a dramatic worsening of world hunger in 2020, the United Nations said today – much of it likely related to the fallout of COVID-19. While the pandemic’s impact has yet to be fully mapped, a multi-agency report estimates that around a tenth of the global population – up to 811 million people – were undernourished last year. The number suggests it will take a tremendous effort for the world to honour its pledge to end hunger by 2030. 

This year’s edition of The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World is the first global assessment of its kind in the pandemic era. The report is jointly published by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the UN World Food Programme (WFP) and the World Health Organization (WHO), UNICEF said in a press release.

Previous editions had already put the world on notice that the food security of millions – many children among them – was at stake. “Unfortunately, the pandemic continues to expose weaknesses in our food systems, which threaten the lives and livelihoods of people around the world,” the heads of the five UN agencies write in this year’s Foreword.

They go on to warn of a “critical juncture,” even as they pin fresh hopes on increased diplomatic momentum. “This year offers a unique opportunity for advancing food security and nutrition through transforming food systems with the upcoming UN Food Systems Summit, the Nutrition for Growth Summit and the COP26 on climate change.” “The outcome of these events,” the five add, “will go on to shape the […] second half of the UN Decade of Action on Nutrition” – a global policy commitment yet to hit its stride.

The numbers in detail

Already in the mid-2010s, hunger had started creeping upwards, dashing hopes of irreversible decline. Disturbingly, in 2020 hunger shot up in both absolute and proportional terms, outpacing population growth: some 9.9 percent of all people are estimated to have been undernourished last year, up from 8.4 percent in 2019.

More than half of all undernourished people (418 million) live in Asia; more than a third (282 million) in Africa; and a smaller proportion (60 million) in Latin America and the Caribbean. But the sharpest rise in hunger was in Africa, where the estimated prevalence of undernourishment – at 21 percent of the population – is more than double that of any other region.

On other measurements too, the year 2020 was sombre. Overall, more than 2.3 billion people (or 30 percent of the global population) lacked year-round access to adequate food: this indicator – known as the prevalence of moderate or severe food insecurity – leapt in one year as much in as the preceding five combined. Gender inequality deepened: for every 10 food-insecure men, there were 11 food-insecure women in 2020 (up from 10.6 in 2019).

Malnutrition persisted in all its forms, with children paying a high price: in 2020, over 149 million under-fives are estimated to have been stunted, or too short for their age; more than 45 million – wasted, or too thin for their height; and nearly 39 million – overweight. A full three-billion adults and children remained locked out of healthy diets, largely due to excessive costs. Nearly a third of women of reproductive age suffer from anaemia. Globally, despite progress in some areas – more infants, for example, are being fed exclusively on breast milk – the world is not on track to achieve targets for any nutrition indicators by 2030.

Other hunger and malnutrition drivers

In many parts of the world, the pandemic has triggered brutal recessions and jeopardized access to food. Yet even before the pandemic, hunger was spreading; progress on malnutrition lagged. This was all the more so in nations affected by conflict, climate extremes or other economic downturns, or battling high inequality – all of which the report identifies as major drivers of food insecurity, which in turn interact.

On current trends, The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World estimates that Sustainable Development Goal 2 (Zero Hunger by 2030) will be missed by a margin of nearly 660 million people. Of these 660 million, some 30 million may be linked to the pandemic’s lasting effects.

What can (still) be done

As outlined in last year’s report, transforming food systems is essential to achieve food security, improve nutrition and put healthy diets within reach of all. This year’s edition goes further to outline six “transformation pathways”. These, the authors say, rely on a “coherent set of policy and investment portfolios” to counteract the hunger and malnutrition drivers.

Depending on the particular driver (or combination of drivers) confronting each country, the report urges policymakers to:

• Integrate humanitarian, development and peacebuilding policies in conflict areas – for example, through social protection measures to prevent families from selling meagre assets in exchange for food;

• Scale up climate resilience across food systems – for example, by offering smallholder farmers wide access to climate risk insurance and forecast-based financing;

• Strengthen the resilience of the most vulnerable to economic adversity – for example, through in-kind or cash support programmes to lessen the impact of pandemic-style shocks or food price volatility;

• Intervene along supply chains to lower the cost of nutritious foods – for example, by encouraging the planting of biofortified crops or making it easier for fruit and vegetable growers to access markets;

• Tackle poverty and structural inequalities – for example, by boosting food value chains in poor communities through technology transfers and certification programmes;

• Strengthen food environments and changing consumer behaviour – for example, by eliminating industrial trans fats and reducing the salt and sugar content in the food supply, or protecting children from the negative impact of food marketing.



Source Panorama.am
Share |
Տեքստում սխալ կամ վրիպակ նկատելու դեպքում, ուղարկեք խմբագրին հաղորդագրություն` նշելով տվյալ սխալը, այնուհետև սեղմելով Ctrl-Enter:

Newsfeed

20:19
More than 100 people injured or died of cluster munition attacks during the Nagorno-Karabakh war
In 2020, the largest number of casualties resulting from cluster munition attacks was recorded during the Nagorno-Karabakh war, according to the...
20:05
NA Speaker discussed the situation on Goris-Kapan road with Iranian Ambassador
The Speaker of Parliament Alen Simonyan met on Thursday with Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Iran (IRI) to Armenia Abbas Badakhshan...
19:57
Ralph Yirikian shared Viva-MTS management experience to Leadership School students
Viva-MTS General Manager Ralph Yirikian presented his knowledge and experience in the fields of business leadership and management to the...
19:41
Maria Zakharova: Moscow looking forward for prompt response from Baku and Yerevan
"Moscow expects Baku and Yerevan will respond to proposals on delimitation and demarcation of the border," Russian Foreign Ministry...
18:56
CSTO to develop cooperative security forces - declaration
The CSTO members have agreed to continue the progressive development of cooperative security forces and resources to enhance their willingness...
18:36
Members of Armenian delegation to PACE known
The Council of the National Assembly on Thursday approved the composition of the Armenian delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the...
18:13
Ray Dalio says regulators will ‘kill’ bitcoin if it becomes too successful
Ray Dalio, founder of the world’s largest hedge fund, Bridgewater Associates, believes regulators would ultimately take control of bitcoin...
18:01
Robert Kocharyan visits opposition MP Armen Charchyan in hospital
Armenia’s second President Robert Kocharyan on Thursday visited famous doctor Armen Charchyan, the imprisoned MP from the opposition...
17:36
Another soldier’s body found in Artsakh search operations on Sept. 16
Artsakh rescuers on Thursday, September 16, found the body of another fallen Armenian soldier as a result of their search operations for the...
17:09
Defense Ministry denies concession of a height in Syunik
The press service at the Ministry of Defense denied reports disseminated by several Telegram channels about a concession of height on...
16:29
A new residential district being built in Artsakh's Askeran region
A new residential district is being built in Hovsepavan community, Artsakh’s Askeran region to be provided to 92 Artsakh families...
15:57
China has fully vaccinated more than 1 billion people
China has fully vaccinated more than 1 billion people against Covid-19 -- over 70% of its total population -- powering ahead of the U.S. and...
15:08
Emile Ghessen's film about the Nagorno-Karabakh war to be screened in Fresno
A new documentary about the 44-day war in Artsakh (Nagorno Karabakh) will be soon screened in Fresno, Fox26news reports.  According to...
14:49
Armenian national football team down to 89th place in newly published FIFA World Ranking
The Armenian national football team has dropped two positions position in the FIFA World Ranking list, which was published by the world’s...
14:14
Doctors ‘on the verge of burnout’ amid COVID surge, says Armenian health minister
Armenia’s Minister of Health Anahit Avanesyan warned of a sharp increase in patients with COVID-19 who require hospitalization due to the...
13:26
Artsakh records 3 new Covid-19 cases
Artsakh confirmed 3 new coronavirus cases in the past 24 hours, the Ministry of Health reported on Thursday, September 16. In total, 48...
13:19
US, Turkish officials hold political talks in Washington
Turkey is sending a top diplomat to the United States for political consultations as part of efforts by the two countries to repair fraught...
13:13
Political scientist: Azerbaijani media ‘enthusiastically’ quoting Nikol Pashinyan and Alen Simonyan
Azerbaijani media outlets are eagerly citing the latest statements of the Armenian leaders, particularly Nikol Pashinyan and Alen Simonyan,...
12:27
Russian peacekeepers conduct planned comprehensive defense training at 27 observation posts in Artsakh
As part of the planned combat training session, Russian peacekeepers in Nagorno-Karabakh (the Artsakh Republic) conducted a comprehensive...
12:12
Armenia reports 764 fresh Covid-19 cases on Sept. 16
Armenia has confirmed 764 new cases of coronavirus in 24 hours, bringing the national tally to 251,323 as of 11 a.m. Thursday, September 16, the...
12:05
Liz Truss named Britain's new foreign secretary
Liz Truss has been appointed UK foreign secretary, replacing Dominic Raab in Boris Johnson’s cabinet reshuffle, The Independent...
11:53
Economist says no alternative to banning bookmaking in Armenia
Economist Mesrop Arakelyan, a former social welfare minister, says that betting amounted to 115 billion drams in Armenia in the first half of...
11:03
Sasun Khachatryan set to be appointed Anti-Corruption Committee head at Thursday’s cabinet meeting
An unprecedented number of 65 issues, of which only 3 are to be reported, are on the agenda of the Armenian cabinet meeting on Thursday. The...
10:46
Inflation recorded in Artsakh
Inflation has been registered in the Artsakh Republic recently. The Artsakh Public TV reports that statisticians have come to such a...
10:30
Armenian-born artist Kristina Oganezz to present ‘Bird of the Holy Spirit’ art project
From September 30 to October 4, the Yerevan Museum of Contemporary Art will host artist Kristina Oganezz's "The Bird of the Holy...
10:15
Macron says French forces killed Islamic State leader in Sahara
French President Emmanuel Macron said on Wednesday that French military forces had killed Islamic militant Adnan Abu Walid al-Sahrawi, the...
20:30
Armenian army chief, US defense attaché discuss security situation in Artsakh
Chief of the General Staff of the Armenian Armed Forces, Lieutenant-General Artak Davtyan on Wednesday hosted newly appointed U.S. Defense...
20:09
Sergey Atomyan named new head of Armenia’s Penitentiary Service
By Nikol Pashinyan's decision, Sergey Atomyan has been relieved of the post of Deputy Governor of Ararat Province. According to another...
19:56
Artur Vanetsyan: Using weakness of Armenian authorities, Azerbaijan is trying to silently carry out demarcation and delimitation
MP Artur Vanetsyan, the leader of the opposition I’m Honored faction in the parliament, reacted to Nikol Pashinyan's statement that...
19:21
‘No one can ever fill your absence in this world’: Hero soldier Albert Hovhannisyan would have turned 20 today
Today, September 15, marks the birthday anniversary of Armenian soldier Albert Hovhannisyan, who died a hero's death during last...

Follow us and get updates!

Most popular articles

{"core.blocks.header.spell_message1":"Selected mistake: ","core.blocks.header.spell_message2":"Send a message about the mistake?"}