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FAO launches its annual World Food Crisis Report

Rome, Apr 24 (Prensa Latina) During an event held on Wednesday at the headquarters of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the 8th edition of the World Food Crisis Report (RCC) was presented.

At the forum, which was attended by UN Secretary General (UNSG) Antonio Guterres and FAO Director-General Qu Dongyu, the Global Network Against Food Crises (GNAFC) released the annual report which reads that 282 million people in 59 countries are in need of immediate assistance.

GNAFC said that the inclusion of 36 new countries in the list over the past eight years was significant, and noted that 36 million people are in an emergency phase, requiring urgent measures to save their lives and livelihoods.

QU Dongyu said in his opening remarks that this document “should serve as a wake-up call to guarantee that we do not neglect provision of agricultural assistance,” and underscored the risk that “hard-won development gains could be reversed.

Also in attendance were Cindy McCain and Catherine Russell, Executive Directors of the World Food Programme (WFP) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), respectively, as well as Filippo Grandi, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

This eighth edition points out that conflicts continue to be the major cause of food insecurity around the world, affecting some 20 countries last year.

The report also highlighted the climate-related impacts in 2023, the hottest year on record in the world, which impacted numerous populations, with episodes of severe floods, storms, droughts, forest fires and outbreaks of pests and diseases, which caused hunger in 18 nations.

Plus, economic crises mainly affected 21 countries, where some 75 million people faced high levels of food insecurity due to their dependence on imported food and agricultural inputs and macroeconomic challenges, including currency depreciation, high prices and high debts.

UN Secretary-General António Guterres said these crises demand an urgent response and emphasized the importance of using the data in this report to transform food systems as “addressing the underlying causes of food insecurity and malnutrition will be vital.”