Rising temperatures and extreme weather are having a huge impact on already vulnerable communities.
Food security means a person always has steady access to safe and nutritious food to maintain an active and healthy life.
The global food supply is not even and some places produce more food than others. Even though the world produces enough food to feed its entire population, four out of ten people across the globe can’t afford even the cheapest healthy diet.
The long-term effects of food insecurity are devastating – leading to poor health and disastrous socio-economic consequences.
What causes food insecurity?
There are many reasons why some countries experience food insecurity more than others.
Long and complex conflicts affect millions of people around the world. They can lead to the sudden large-scale displacement of people who often end up living in makeshift camps.
During conflict people often lose their source of income and are pushed into food insecurity. Food systems and markets become disrupted, pushing up prices and sometimes leading to a lack of water, fuel and food.
Conflicts prevent businesses from operating – weakening economies and reducing employment opportunities.
Food can be used as a weapon, with armed groups cutting off food supplies in order to gain ground. Landmines and improvised explosive devices can also prevent access to or destroy agricultural lands.
The climate crisis
Climate change is driving a rise in extreme weather around the world, leading to more frequent droughts and floods. It can also cause a loss of income for families because of decreased employment opportunities in the farming sector, meaning they struggle to access food. Poor harvests can also increase food prices.
Increasing desertification through gradual climate change make communities less able to deal with future shocks. This can increase tensions between farmers and herders over access to water and land.
With 689 million people around the world living on less than US$1.90 a day according to the World Bank, poverty and inequality are also leading drivers of food insecurity. When people have less money, they can’t afford food and become unable to work. Families in the countries where we operate often spend most of their income on food.
Those living in poverty frequently skip meals or eat cheaper and nutrition-poor foods, putting their health at risk.
Economic shocks like hyperinflation can also coincide with sharp increases in the price of staple foods.