Snapticle

Food Insecurity Situation in 2022

The World Food Programme (WFP) dubbed 2022 "The Year of Unprecedented Hunger" since hunger remained gruesome in many regions of the world, including India.

  • The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) estimates that 307 crore people will not be able to afford nutritious food by 2020. Nearly a third of the world's population resides in India.

What stands out from the various reports?

International Food Program:

  • Since 2019, the number of people experiencing severe food insecurity has nearly quadrupled, and the World Food Programme estimates that 828 million people go to bed hungry each night (World Food Programme).
  • Food security increased above pre-pandemic levels, particularly in areas devastated by armed conflict and natural calamities.

The FAO's The Future of Food and Agriculture:

  • According to the FAO report Future of Food and Agriculture — Drivers and Triggers for Transformation, if agrifood systems stay the same, there will be persistent food insecurity worldwide.
  • If agrifood systems stay the same, the globe will experience food insecurity, declining resources, and unsustainable economic development.
  • The globe needed to be more on track to accomplish the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), including the agrifood objectives.
  • If considerable efforts are not taken to halt present trends, there will be 10 billion people in the globe by 2050, creating an unparalleled task to feed.

GHI (Global Hunger Index):

  • The Global Hunger Index (GHI) 2022 gave India a dismal ranking of 107 out of 121 nations.
  • India (107) is rated last among the South Asian nations, behind Sri Lanka (64), Nepal (81), Bangladesh (84), and Pakistan (99).
  • Globally, the fight against hunger has mostly stalled in recent years; in 2022, the score was 18.2, down from 19.1 in 2014, representing little improvement. The 2022 GHI score is still regarded as "moderate," nonetheless.

FSSAI's State Food Security Index (SFSI):

  • The top-scoring large state overall was Tamil Nadu, followed by Gujarat and Maharashtra.
  • On a scale of 100, Tamil Nadu received an overall score of 82.5. The factors considered were human resource and institutional data, compliance, infrastructure and surveillance for food testing, training and capacity building, and consumer empowerment.
  • Jammu & Kashmir, which performed higher than the capital with a score of 68.5 among Union Territories (UT), came in first, followed by Chandigarh (66) and the National Capital Territory of Delhi (66). (58).

Report on Promises and Reality:

  • The Targeted Public Distribution System (TDPS), India's instrument to tackle food insecurity, has deprived more than 90 million eligible individuals of their legal entitlements.
  • The Census of India from 2011 continues to serve as the primary data source for determining how many people will be enrolled in the programme. As a result, a sizable portion of the population has been excluded in the years afterwards.
  • Because of this inherent flaw in the legal system, at least 12% of the population was denied access to legal protections in the most acceptable manner.

What recommendations do the various reports make

Systemic Policy Modifications:

  • Systemic policy reforms and international cooperation are required to improve their situation and achieve the UN-mandated Sustainable Development Goal of "Zero Hunger" by 2030.

Systems for Sustainable Agriculture:

  • We now have a greater need for food due to the fast human population expansion.
  • In order to handle this in the future, agricultural systems will need to produce more food sustainably.

Insect population decline:

  • With many insect pollinators, people can avoid producing large quantities of food and other agricultural items.
  • Because of their ecological significance, ecological variety, and impact on agriculture, human health, and natural resources, insects are significant.
  • They biologically support all terrestrial ecosystems, cycle nutrients, pollinate plants, disseminate seeds, maintain soil structure and fertility, regulate the populations of other species, and provide a significant source of food for other taxa.

Consider Long-Term Needs as Well: 

  • Decision-makers must consider factors other than immediate necessities. Quick remedies, disjointed strategies, and a lack of vision will cost everyone dearly.
  • A shift in direction is urgently required to build a more resilient and sustainable future for agrifood systems.

Nutrition Seen Through Various Lenses:

  • Health, sanitation, gender views, and societal standards are all factors in better nutrition and food. As a result, a comprehensive policy is required to narrow the nutritional gap.

Introducing a Social Audit Mechanism:

  • With the assistance of local authorities, States and Union Territories should be required to conduct a social audit of the mid-day meal programme in every area and simultaneously promote nutritional awareness.
  • It is also possible to consider using information technology to enhance programme monitoring.

PDS reorientation:

  • In order to guarantee that healthy food is available, accessible, and affordable, the Public Distribution System has to be reoriented and upgraded. This will also have a favourable effect on the purchasing power of the population's lower socioeconomic sector.

SDG Mission led by women:

  • Existing direct nutrition programmes need to be redesigned, and tying them to women's self-help organizations would help India achieve Sustainable Development Goal 2, which calls for eradicating hunger and all types of malnutrition by 2030.

Reducing Hunger and Waste:

  • Due to a lack of proper cold storage and warehousing, India wastes about 30% of its fruits and vegetables and around 7% of its whole yearly food production.
  • According to the International Institute of Refrigeration, developing nations could reduce poverty and malnutrition by saving 200 million tonnes of food, or about 14% of their food supply, if they had the same refrigeration infrastructure as affluent nations.

Source: DTE 

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