News / Asia

World Hunger Down, But Not by Enough to Reach Goals

An internally displaced Somali girl prepares the traditional Somali breakfast "Anjero" at Sayyidka camp in the Howlwadag district, south of Somalia's capital Mogadishu, May 3, 2013.
An internally displaced Somali girl prepares the traditional Somali breakfast "Anjero" at Sayyidka camp in the Howlwadag district, south of Somalia's capital Mogadishu, May 3, 2013.
TEXT SIZE - +
— The number of hungry people in the world is down slightly, but not enough to meet development goals, according to a new United Nations report.
 
The report, written by the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), said one in eight people worldwide, or 842 million, suffers from chronic hunger. That figure is a decrease from last year’s estimate of 868 million, and down 17 percent from the early 1990s, but it is not low enough to reach the goal world leaders set of reducing the proportion of hungry people in developing nations by half by 2015.
 
“This goal is close and has been reached in many countries,” said FAO statistician and study author Piero Conforti.
 
Just short
 
The target for all developing regions is 12 percent undernourishment by 2015. At the current pace, a figure of 13 percent will be achieved instead. Conforti said that that final percentage point will be the toughest.
 
“In sub-Saharan Africa or in Western Asia, you have more than one country that is really not showing much progress,” he said. “It’s difficult to tackle those situations where food insecurity is very high.”
 
Conforti said investments in agriculture, and in small-scale agriculture in particular, can make the biggest impact on hunger and poverty reduction.
 
“In the countries where you see food security being really mainstreamed among economic policies and where you see real commitment from government, that is where you see results,” he added.
 
Progress report
 
The FAO report says hunger is most prevalent in sub-Saharan Africa, where progress has been modest. Improvement has been slow in Southern Asia and Northern Africa, and non-existent in Western Asia. Latin America and Eastern and Southeastern Asia have seen the most progress.
 
Conforti said the recent economic downturn and food price spikes in recent years had a smaller than expected impact on global hunger, as farmers responded to higher prices by increasing production.
 
The report noted the positive impact of money sent home by people working in other countries.
 
“They’ve become significant flows, sometimes bigger than the total inflow of foreign aid,” Conforti said.
 
In the right investment environment, these remittances can provide a significant boost to small-scale farmers and improve food security, he added.

You May Like

Multimedia Anti-Keystone XL Protests Continue

Demonstrators are worried about pipeline's effect on climate change, their traditional way of life, health and safety More

Thailand's Political Power Struggle Continues

Court gave Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra until May 2 to prepare her defense over abuse of power charges but uncertainty remains over election timing More

Malaysia Plane Search Tests Limits of Ocean Mapping Technology

Expert tells VOA existing equipment’s maximum operating depth is around 6 kilometers as operation continues on ocean bed for any trace of MH370 More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Messagei
X
Penelope Poulou
April 22, 2014 5:53 PM
Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Message

Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pro-Russian Separatists Plan 'Federalization Referendum' in Eastern Ukraine

Pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine say they plan to move forward next month with a referendum vote for greater autonomy, despite the Geneva agreement reached with Russia, the U.S. and Ukraine to end the political conflict. VOA's Brian Padden reports from the city of Donetsk in Eastern Ukraine.
Video

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

French filmmaker Luc Jacquet won worldwide acclaim for his 2005 Academy Award-winning documentary "March of the Penguins". Now Jacquet is back with a new film that takes movie-goers deep into the heart of a tropical rainforest - not only to celebrate its grandeur, but to make the case for its survival. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Boston Marathon Bittersweet for Many Runners

Monday's running of the Boston Marathon was bittersweet for many of the 36,000 participants as they finished the run that was interrupted by a double bombing last year. Many gathered along the route paid respect to the four people killed as a result of two bombings near the finish line. VOA's Carolyn Presutti returned to Boston this year to follow two runners, forever changed because of the crimes.
Video

Video International Students Learn Film Production in World's Movie Capital

Hollywood - which is part of Los Angeles - is the movie capital of the world, and many aspiring filmmakers go there in hopes of breaking into the movie business. Mike O'Sullivan reports that regional universities are also a magnet for students who hope to become producers or directors.
Video

Video Pacific Rim Trade Deal Proves Elusive

With the U.S.-led war in Iraq ended and American military involvement in Afghanistan winding down, President Barack Obama has sought to pivot the country's foreign policy focus towards Asia. One aspect of that pivot is the negotiation of a free-trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations. But as Obama leaves this week on a trip to four Asian countries he has found it very difficult to complete the trade pact. VOA's Ken Bredemeier has more from Washington.
Video

Video Autistic Adults Face Housing, Job Challenges

Many parents of children with disabilities fear for the future of their adult child. It can be difficult to find services to help adults with disabilities - physical, mental or emotional - find work or live on their own. The mother of an autistic boy set up a foundation to advocate for the estimated 1.2 million American adults with autism, a developmental disorder that causes communication difficulties and often social difficulties. VOA's Faiza Elmasry reports.
AppleAndroid