A billion hungry...and growing: FAO
Rome, December 10, 2008
High food prices helped push another 40 million people into hunger this year, the UN's food agency said yesterday, raising the number of undernourished people in the world to 963 million.
A report by the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) that said fewer and fewer people can afford decent meals, especially in Asia and Africa, despite a fall in food prices, gave a hollow ring to pledges to cut world poverty.
'High food prices have had a devastating effect on the most vulnerable and insecure part of the world's population,' Kostas Stamoulis, head of FAO's agricultural and development economics division, said.
He said unreplenished food stocks, price volatility and the global financial crisis continue to hurt food security, while food prices on domestic markets remain at record high levels.
The cost of food staples began rocketing in 2006 because of a spike in commodity prices, and reached a peak in June 2008.-Reuters