The global hunger is rising after it declined over a decade, resulting in 815 million people — over a tenth of the global population — staying hungry in 2016.

Last year saw 38 million more staying hungry, compared to 2015, says the annual United Nations report on world food security and nutrition. It attributed this rise to proliferation of violent conflicts and climate-related shocks.

The report revealed that the prevalence of hunger was highest in conflict zones of the world.

“We will not end hunger and all forms of malnutrition by 2030 unless we address all the factors that undermine food security and nutrition. Securing peaceful and inclusive societies is a necessary condition to that end,”the report said.

The report said other reasons are El Niño and the global economic slowdown.

While 155 million children aged under five are stunted (too short for their age), 41 million children were overweight. 52 million children across the world suffer from wasting, meaning their weight is too low for their height.

Statistics

Hunger and food security

  • Overall number of hungry people in the world: 815 million, including:
    – In Asia: 520 million
    – In Africa: 243 million
    – In Latin America and the Caribbean: 42 million
  • Share of the global population who are hungry: 11%
    – Asia: 11.7%
    – Africa: 20% (in eastern Africa, 33.9%)
    – Latin America and the Caribbean: 6.6%

Malnutrition in all its forms

  • Number of children under 5 years of age who suffer from stunted growth (height too low for their age) : 155 million
    – Number of those living in countries affected by varying levels of conflict: 122 million
  • Children under 5 affected by wasting (weight too low given their height): 52 million
  • Number of adults who are obese: 641 million (13% of all adults on the planet)
  • Children under 5 who are overweight: 41 million
  • Number of women of reproductive age affected by anaemia: 613 million (around 33% of the total)

The impact of conflict

  • Number of the 815 million hungry people on the planet who live in countries affected by conflict: 489 million
  • The prevalence of hunger in countries affected by conflict is 1.4 – 4.4 percentage points higher than in other countries
  • In conflict settings compounded by conditions of institutional and environmental fragility, the prevalence is 11 and 18 percentage points higher
  • People living in countries affected by protracted crises are nearly 2.5 times more likely to be undernourished than people elsewhere

Courtesy: FAO

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