Cesvi: “In Africa, undernourished people will increase from 282 to 298 million in 2030”

Both North America and Europe saw slight growth in moderate to severe food insecurity between 2021 and 2022

In South Asia, rates of child undernutrition are worrying and undernutrition among the general population is high. The child wasting rate is 14.8%, the highest in the world, more than double that of sub-Saharan Africa (6.0%). A central factor is poor maternal nutritional status. This is what emerges from the Global Hunger Index (GHI)among the main international reports on the measurement of hunger in the world, edited by Cesvi for the Italian edition and drawn up annually by Welthungerhilfe and Concern Worldwide, humanitarian organizations that are part of the European Alliance2015 network.

Africa south of the Sahara has the highest level of malnutrition (21.7%, up sharply from 16.8% in 2010-2012) and the highest infant mortality rate (7.4%) in the world: Climate change is increasing food insecurity, given that disasters that impact agriculture and food security occur disproportionately in the region, together with factors such as the Covid-19 pandemic and the Russian-Ukrainian war. Africa is the only area in the world where a significant increase in the number of undernourished people is expected: from 282 million in 2022 to 298 million in 2030.

West Asia and North Africa have the third highest 2023 GHI scores (11.9, moderate), with the highest figures in Yemen and Syria (39.9 and 26.1), both ravaged by armed conflict. The worsening in Latin America and the Caribbean since 2015 is worrying, where hunger has increased in nine countries: Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Haiti, Paraguay, Trinidad and Tobago and Venezuela. The average cost of a healthy diet in the region is the highest in the world, as is income inequality, and the cost of food is rising. East Asia and Southeast Asia have the second lowest 2023 GHI score: for North Korea, Papua New Guinea and East Timor the levels are severe, moderate in several countries, low in China, Fiji and Mongolia.

With a score of 6.1 (low), the Europe and Central Asia region performs best. However, 10.5% of the population in Eastern Europe and 18.4% of the population in Central Asia experienced moderate or severe food insecurity in 2020-2022. In North America, 7.8% of the population experienced moderate or severe food insecurity in 2020-2022, as did 5.1% in Northern Europe, 8.5% in Southern Europe and 4. 9% in Western Europe. Both North America and Europe saw slight growth in moderate to severe food insecurity between 2021 and 2022; this increasing trend was found in all sub-regions of Europe, with the exception of Southern Europe. Indeed, high domestic food price inflation has put pressure on both low- and high-income countries, including in these areas.