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World hunger on rise, 2 billion people hit by famine, food shortage and starvation: UN report

Rome: A staggering 2 billion people around the world, have been hit by severe famine, food shortage, starvation and malnutrition, claims the United Nations (UN). In a report, the UN pointed out that the number of people suffering from food shortage and starvation has been consistently rising since 2015, and as of today, the numbers have reached 820 million. However, the UN has expressed regret over the matter, saying that if the situation continues to persist, it would be difficult to achieve the ‘Zero Hunger’ target by the year 2030.

On Monday, the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), with help from other agencies, published the report which depicts the grim reality. The UN report, named – The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World, reveals the fact that the number of people with no access to sufficient amounts of food is rising steadily. At the same time, the report highlights the contrary that the number of people facing the problem of being overweight and obesity, is surging in all the continents and sectors.

Nevertheless, the report suggests measures to counter the food shortage and starvation. It states, ‘The programs run around the world for the alleviation of poverty should also include the factors for providing food security and a balanced diet for the poorest of the poor. Major policy changes are necessary to achieve this. Simultaneously, it is necessary to design the social and economic policies, to tide over the possible economic crisis. Care should be taken to ensure the vital programs for health and education do not suffer.’

The UN report draws attention to the fact that the level of food shortage, starvation and malnutrition is rising in the countries, which are lagging in economic growth and have income inequality. The Asian continent is the worst hit by food shortage and starvation, where more than 510 million people are deprived of a regular diet. Also, in Africa, the number stands at more than 250 million, and in Latin America, it is nearly 40 million.

The ever-increasing conflicts worldwide, rising instability, climate change and economic slowdown are the prime factors influencing the problems of food shortage and starvation, the UN report mentions.

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