COVID Has Pushed Hundreds of Millions Into Hunger Worldwide

The United Nations said Monday that global hunger grew dramatically in 2020, due in large part to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the cost of and access to food. 
“The reality is worse than expected,” World Food Program chief economist Arif Husain said. “In one year alone, the number of people in the grip of chronic hunger has risen more than in the previous five years combined.”   In its annual report on theFILE – Children shelter from the sun in Ankilimarovahatsy, Madagascar, a village in the far south of the island where most children are acutely malnourished, Nov. 9, 2020.Children have been especially affected. Millions have been deprived of school lunches, due to closures during the pandemic. For many, this is their only reliable daily meal.  Stunting and wasting in children were up last year, as was being overweight — an effect of poor nutrition.  In addition to COVID-19, conflict, and the impact of climate change on agriculture also affected the global food supply.  In all, the U.N. has said some 41 million people in 43 countries are on the brink of famine, and it will not take much to push them over the edge.  “To think we are going to end hunger by 2030, that’s not even possible given the direction, the trajectory that we are on now,” Beasley said. “If we don’t address these issues in a very serious way, you are going to have mass famine, destabilization of nations and mass migration.” 

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