According to the United Nations, it is estimated that by 2020, one out of every three people in the world will not have access to enough food, and 720 to 811 million people worldwide will have faced hunger.
Some believe that the reason hunger has not been eliminated is that not enough food is being produced to feed the entire population of the planet.
However, Gisèle Yasmeen, senior lecturer at the University of British Columbia in Canada, says, “We are not running out of food because we have too many people. There is another root cause.” She explains.
Hello,This is Santoshi.
There are things that you can’t understand unless you actually “see it with your eyes” rather than what you see or hear.
Now that there is a lot of noise about food shortages, is hunger caused by population growth? Or is there another problem? Here is an interesting article I found.
‘Too many people, not enough food’ isn’t the cause of hunger and food insecurity
Malnutrition due to hunger is particularly severe in Africa, Asia, South America, and the Caribbean.
In recent years, food shortages have skyrocketed due to the new coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) and climate change, and the war between Russia and Ukraine, a major exporter of wheat and corn, has also contributed to food shortages.
Many people believe that the reason for hunger is this: “There are too many people living on the planet.
“There are too many people living on the earth and not enough food is being produced.”
This idea originated in the 18th century with the predictions of economist Thomas Malthus and is still widely held at the time of this writing.
However, Yasmeen says, “This belief distracts us from addressing the root causes of hunger and malnutrition.”
And he argues that there are other reasons for hunger.
The root causes of hunger, Yasmeen points out, are “inequality and armed conflict.
The world produces enough food to provide more than 2300 kcal per day for every man, woman, and child.
But poverty and inequality, constituted by the effects of class, gender, race, and colonialism, have resulted in unequal access to the earth’s bounty,” Yasmeen said.
The question is, “Why on earth would there be hunger when enough food is being produced?”
Yasmeen said, “Half of the world’s crop production consists of sugarcane, corn, wheat, and rice, much of which is used for sweeteners and other high-calorie, low-nutrient products, or for industrially produced meat feed, biofuels, and vegetable oils.
The global food system is controlled by a handful of multinational corporations that produce ultra-processed foods containing sugar, salt, fat, artificial colors, and preservatives.”
In other words, much of the food produced is used to manufacture luxury goods consumed in developed countries.
In reality, the food is not getting to the people facing hunger.
Hypothesis that economic inequality causes hunger
A study of the Bengal famine by Amartya Sen, Asia’s first Nobel Prize winner in economics, also noted that “millions starved to death not simply because there was a shortage of food, but because there was no money to buy food.
We also know that hunger is exacerbated by armed conflict.
The most food insecure countries, such as Somalia, are ravaged by war.
More than half of the undernourished and nearly 80% of stunted children live in countries plagued by some form of conflict or violence.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has warned that the wars between the two countries are exposing these countries to a “hurricane of hunger” because 45 African countries and least developed countries import more than one-third of their wheat from Russia and Ukraine.
The UN World Food Program (WFP) has also reported that its activities have been hampered by the war’s high food prices.
Yasmeen noted that each region needs to establish “food sovereignty” in order to address food insecurity.
He also called for diplomatic investment to avoid armed conflict.
In addition, crop production has been negatively affected by recent climate change, a decrease in beneficial insects due to pesticide use, and soil contamination.
Yasmeen also pointed out that much of the food produced is wasted.
For example, Japan alone generates about 5.7 million tons of “food loss,” or the amount of food that is thrown away, each year.
Per capita food loss reaches about 45 kilograms per year.
Worldwide, food waste is estimated to be about 1.3 billion tons per year, which means that about one-third of the food produced for human consumption is wasted!
Poverty and systemic inequality are root causes of food insecurity as well as armed conflict,” Yasmeen said. It is important to put this idea at the center of the debate on feeding the world’s people,” he said.