World, Health

World hunger on rise again

UN Food and Agriculture Organization says in report number of undernourished people increased to 815 million in 2016

World hunger on rise again

By Meltem Bulur, Emre Aytekin and Mustafa Calkaya


World hunger appears to be on the rise again after a prolonged decline, according to UN Food and Agriculture Organization’s (FAO) report for 2017.

In the report titled “The State of Food Security and Nutrition In The World” that was released mid-September, the UN body said: “The estimated number of undernourished people increased to 815 million in 2016, up from 777 million in 2015.”

Experts said global food production should rise up to 50 percent in order to be able to meet the nutritional requirement, which will reach to 10 billion of the world population by 2050.

The report said 154.8 million children younger than five years are still affected by stunting which is equal to one out of four children under the age of five years.

“In 2016, wasting affected 7.7 percent (51.7 million) of children under five years of age worldwide,” it said.

On the other hand, obesity among adults has been rising and according to FAO, “the global prevalence of obesity more than doubled between 1980 and 2014. In 2014, more than 600 million adults were obese, equal to about 13 percent of the world’s adult population.”

In a written statement Monday, Turkey’s EU Affairs Ministry said “access to food and nutrition is the most fundamental right and this right of migrants should not be violated.”

FAO has declared this years’ theme for World Food Day as “changing the future of migration by investing in food security and rural development”, the statement said.

According to statement, migration has been rising due to famine, poverty and wars since 2000.

“Development policies aiming to provide food security and prosperity of rural areas would decrease the number of motives that make people migrate and improve migrants’ life conditions,” it also said.

Turkish Minister of Food, Agriculture and Livestock Ahmet Esref Fakibaba also highlighted the number of refugees in Turkey.

Speaking at an event organized by FAO and Turkish Union of Agricultural Chambers (TZOB) Monday, Fakibaba said 66 million people have been forced to migrate and the geography which includes Turkey hosts 26 percent of those people.

Fakibaba also said Turkey will be in an important position in the world when it increases its food production.

UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has been celebrating “October 16, World Food Day” since 1980 and it is widely recognized by organizations concerned with food security.

*Sena Guler contributed to this report from Ankara.

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