Developing regions have progressed towards the first MDG’s hunger target but marked differences across regions persist — according to FAO’s flagship report on the state of food insecurity in the world.
FAO expresses their main conclusion in the 2013 version of the report with as decreasing but still enormous number of people suffering from chronic hunger. 842 million people did not get enough food regularily to lead an active life. However, assuming a constantly continuing decline until 2015, levels close to the first MDG’s target could be reached. Meeting MDG1 required considerable and immediate additional efforts. Despite the overall progress, varying distributions of undernourished people in the world existed.
// Key messages
- Economic growth needs to be sustained and broadly shared
- Policies have to target the poor
- Social protection and food distribution should be prioritised
- Remittances impact on poverty and food security
- Key to reduce hunger is a long-term commitment to mainstream food security and nutrition in public policies and programmes
// The multiple dimensions of food security
The 2009 Declaration of the World Summit on Food Security stated that “food security exists when all people, at all times, have physical, social and economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food, which meets their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life”. Based on that the following food security dimensions were identified in the study and analysed through a suite of indicators:
- Food availability__ highly improved, but uneven progress across regions and over time
- Access to food__ significantly improved, in line with poverty reduction
- Food utilisation__ marked improvements
- Stability__ exposure to short-term risks may endanger long-term progress
// Beyond the MDGs__ Voices of the hungry project
To successfully reach future goals, such as the post-2015 development agenda, there was a need to improve monitoring. For this purpose, a mixture of “people-focused” and “planet-focused” indicators, as well as a combination of periodic in-depth and more frequent experience-based surveys was suggested. The new FAO project ‘Voices of the Hungry’, which introduced in the report, aims to establish an innovative global standard for measuring food insecurity by 2015. The project incorporates food insecurity experience scale as well as globally and annually collected data.
// About the series
The ‘State of Food Insecurity in the World’ is jointly published by the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the World Food Programme (WFP). It raises awareness about global hunger issues, discusses underlying causes of hunger and malnutrition and monitors progress towards hunger reduction targets established at the 1996 World Food Summit and the Millennium Summit.
The State of Food Insecurity in the World 2013__ PDF
Executive summary with key messages__ PDF
Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations