A close look at the world food situation 2020.
The food body of the United Nations has warned that as a result of national governments adopting protectionist measures during the Coronavirus pandemic, this could result in a food shortage all across the globe.
It had been warned by the United Nations’ World Food Programme (WFP), that because of the crisis caused by the Coronavirus pandemic, the number of people faced by severe food insecurity in the year 2020, could actually double and reach around 265 million worldwide.
Because of the Coronavirus crisis, there are a less number of field workers. This, combined with moves made towards protectionism – export bans and tariffs, would mean that in the ensuing weeks, problems could arrive rapidly.
Maximo Torero, Chief Economist of the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation, said:
“The worst that can happen is that governments restrict the flow of food. All measures against free trade will be counterproductive. Now is not the time for restrictions or putting in place trade barriers. Now is the time to protect the flow of food around the world.”
Maximo Torero states that the current situation is much different than the food crisis of
2007 to 2008. He says:
“Today, the problem is not a problem of food availability, the problem today is of food access. We have food available and we have a very good harvest of cereals this year. The problems we are seeing are logistical problems, and especially high value commodities because they are perishable and any logistic delay will affect them.”
Martien van Nieuwkoop at the World Bank, while talking at virtual meeting held by the World Committee on Food Security (CFS), says:
“We think it’s a very ironic situation. We see rising hunger in a world of plenty. Global crop markets are well supplied and relatively stable.”