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Portal:Hunger relief

Introduction

The FAO's food price index reflects changes in the average international price of food. The sharp rise in 2007/08 caused a global food crisis, with food riots in dozens of countries, and pushed well over a hundred million into extreme hunger. The rise in 2010/11 contributed to the Arab Spring.

In politics, humanitarian aid, and social science, hunger is a condition in which a person, for a sustained period, is unable to eat sufficient food to meet basic nutritional needs.

Throughout history, portions of the world's population have often experienced sustained periods of hunger. In many cases, this resulted from food supply disruptions caused by war, plagues, or adverse weather. For the first few decades after World War II, technological progress and enhanced political cooperation suggested it might be possible to substantially reduce the number of people suffering from hunger. While progress was uneven, by 2000 the threat of extreme hunger subsided for many of the world's people. According to the WFP some statistics are that, "Some 795 million people in the world do not have enough food to lead a healthy active life. That's about one in nine people on earth. The vast majority of the world's hungry people live in developing countries, where 12.9 percent of the population is undernourished."

Until 2006, the average international price of food had been largely stable for several decades. In the closing months of 2006, however, prices began to rise rapidly. By 2008, rice had tripled in price in some regions, and this severely affected developing countries. Food prices fell in early 2009, but rose to another record high in 2011, and have since decreased slightly. The 2008 worldwide financial crisis further increased the number of people suffering from hunger, including dramatic increases even in advanced economies such as Great Britain, the Eurozone and the United States.

The Millennium Development Goals included a commitment to a further 50% reduction in the proportion of the world's population who suffer from extreme hunger by 2015. As of 2012, this target appeared difficult to achieve, due in part to persistent inflation in food prices. However, in late 2012 the UN's Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) stated it is still possible to hit the target with sufficient effort. In 2013, the FAO estimated that 842 million people are undernourished (12% of the global population). Malnutrition is a cause of death for more than 3.1 million children under 5 every year. UNICEF estimates 300 million children go to bed hungry each night; and that 8000 children under the age of 5 are estimated to die of malnutrition every day.

Selected article

Christina Aguilera
Yum! Brands' annual World Hunger Relief campaign is the world's largest private sector hunger relief effort to raise awareness, volunteerism and funds to benefit the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) and other hunger

relief agencies. Approximately 38,000 company and franchised KFC, Pizza Hut, Taco Bell, Long John Silver's and A&W Restaurants located in more than 110 countries participate in the World Hunger Relief program.


Selected biography

FMLappeKamphausen(c)SteffiBehrmann09.jpg
Frances Moore Lappé (born February 10, 1944) is the author of 18 books including the three-million copy Diet for a Small Planet. She is the co-founder of three national organizations that explore the roots of hunger, poverty and environmental crises, as well as solutions now emerging worldwide through what she calls Living Democracy. Her most recent book is EcoMind: Changing the Way We Think to Create the World We Want.

Throughout her works Lappé has argued that world hunger is caused not by the lack of food but rather by the inability of hungry people to gain access to the abundance of food that exists in the world and/or food-producing resources because they are simply too poor. She has posited that our current "thin democracy" creates a mal-distribution of power and resources that inevitably creates waste and an artificial scarcity of the essentials for sustainable living.


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Lauren Bush at a 2011 party promoting her FEED Projects charity
Credit: Nick Step

Lauren Bush at a 2011 party promoting her FEED charity, which helps fund the United Nations' efforts to feed children throughout the world

Did you know

...that according to a May 2013 report by Oxfam and Church Action on Poverty , about half a million Britons have now used food banks?
Other "Did you know" facts... Read more...

Selected quote

The real cause of hunger is the powerlessness of the poor to gain access to the resources they need to feed themselves.
— Frances Moore Lappé

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