Why should a continent like Africa - which has massive potential of comfortably feeding the world, suffer such a large percentage of hunger? It questions everything we stand for as a people. If we cannot do anything else, Africa should be able to feed herself.
The recent report released by the State of Food Security and Nutrition, which was published in the World 2019 report yesterday, pegs the number of people suffering from extreme hunger in Africa at over 256 million.
This is alarming considering the amount of money that has been spent on agriculture and food programs across the continent in the last decade. What are we doing and if the government is doing anything all all, why are we not having positive results?
Going by the 2016 reports released by the United Nations population commission, Africa has 1.2 billion people. It is a cause for concern if about 20 percent of the continent is battling extreme hunger.
The report further goes on to reveal that Africa has the highest percentage of hungry people globally, with one in five people going hungry. The number rises to nearly one in three in east Africa.
This clearly shows that despite all what governments across Africa are saying, the rate of hunger in the continent is on an upward curve. For how long can we continue to lie to ourselves?
According to the report, 821.6 million people - or 11% of the population suffer from extreme hunger globally. It is indeed a shame that Africa contributes over 256 million out of that number.
The Food Security and Nutrition 2019 report confirms that there is a threatening rise in world hunger for the third year in a row. The most threat, however, is in Africa.
There were 821 million chronically undernourished people in the world last year, up from 811 the previous year. One in nine people in the world now faces hunger.Percentage and number of people affected by severe food insecurity in 2016
|World||9.3 (± 0.4)||688.5 (± 27.6)|
|Africa||27.4 (±0.7)||333.2 (±8.6)|
|Asia||7.0 (± 0.6)||309.9 (± 26)|
|Latin America||6.4 (± 0.3)||38.3 (± 2.0)|
|Northern America and Europe||1.2 (±0.1)||13.0 (±1.3)|
Source: FAO, IFAD, UNICEF, WFP, and WHO. 2017. The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2017. Building resilience for peace and food security. Rome, FAO.
Global estimates of undernourishment rose from 777 million in 2015 to 821 million in 2017. Africa has the highest prevalence of undernourishment, estimated in 2016 to be 20% of the population.
This is especially alarming in Eastern Africa, where it is suspected that one-third of the population is undernourished.
Due primarily to its larger population size, Asia has the highest total number of undernourished individuals—520 million, versus Africa’s 243 million (FAO, 2017).
Header Image Credit: Global Giving