Swarms of food-devouring desert locusts threaten food security for nearly 10 million people in Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia, said the Food Security and Nutrition Working Group on Monday, describing the infestations as the worst in 25 years in Ethiopia and in 70 years in Kenya. The group, which focuses on central and eastern Africa, said the locust upsurge threatens the coming agricultural season.
Ertharin Cousin, director of the UN World Food Program since 2012, has joined the Chicago Council on Global Affairs and will advise the group in “its ongoing efforts to advance global food security by supporting research, representing food security expertise on a variety of global stages, and building unique partnerships.”
Malawi is facing a food crisis as the southern Africa region wrestles with drought and high temperatures. Due to record high winter temperatures hitting southern Africa during planting season, Malawi’s corn production fell by 12 percent in April leaving the country short of 1 million tonnes of grain during its worst food crisis in a decade, The East African said.
Nearly a quarter of the population of South Sudan, some 2.8 million people, urgently needs food assistance "and at least 40,000 people are on the brink of catastrophe," say three UN agencies.
Nearly 100 million people in southern Africa, Asia and Latin America face food and water shortages as well as vulnerable to diseases such as the Zika virus, says the Guardian, summarizing reports by international aid agencies and governments.
Rampant hunger is appearing in Liberia, one of the west African nations hit by ebola, says Mother Jones magazine. It cites a spot check by Mercy Corps, a charity, of three parts of the country heavily affected by the disease.
Some 805 million people suffer from hunger around the world, or one in nine of the earth's population, but the total is down by 100 million people in the past decade and by 200 million since 1990-92, says the United Nations. With the reduction, the world is within reach of the goal of cutting in half the hunger rate in developing nations by 2015 "if appropriate and immediate efforts are stepped up," says the UN report State of Food Insecurity in the World.