Announcing the 2014 Global Hunger Index

GHI2014The 2014 Global Hunger Index, now available from the International Food Policy Research Institute, Welthungerhilfe, and Concern Worldwide, shows a steady decrease in hunger in most developing countries.While great strides have been made to feed the world, hunger persists: some 805 million people go hungry every day because they don’t get enough to eat, and even those who eat enough calories can still suffer from “hidden hunger”– deficiencies in micronutrients that are often harder to detect but devastating in their impact.

Levels of hunger are still “alarming” in 14 countries, and “extremely alarming” in Burundi and Eritrea. In addition, a staggering 2 billion people globally suffer from “hidden hunger,” or micronutrient deficiency. Hidden hunger holds countries back in a cycle of poor nutrition, poor health, lost productivity, poverty, and reduced economic growth.

Sustainably tackling hidden hunger requires multisectoral action on all levels and a post-2015 framework that includes a universal goal to end hunger and malnutrition in all its forms and clear mechanisms to ensure accountability. Alongside the multi-sectoral coordination, the report acknowledges the importance of  “behavioral change communication … to educate people about health services, sanitation and hygiene, and caring practices, as well as the need for greater empowerment of women at all levels.”

Read the full report here!

Findings for THP’s Program Countries

The following table presents a selection of findings from the 2014 Global Hunger Index (GHI) report for The Hunger Project’s program countries.

Proportion of undernourished in the population (%) Prevalence of underweight in children under five years (%) Under-five mortality rate (%) Global Hunger Index (GHI)
Year ’04–’06             ’11–’13 ’03–’07            ’09–’13 2005          2012 2005         2014
Bangladesh 15.3                    16.3 37.3                  36.8 6.8              4.1 19.8            19.1
Benin 13.8                     6.1 20.2                 18.4 * 12.0             9.0 15.3            11.2
Bolivia 29.9                    21.3 5.9                   4.4 * 5.8               4.1 13.9             9.9
Burkina Faso 25.8                   25.0 37.6                 24.4 16.0              10.2 26.5             19.9
Ethiopia 46.8                   37.1 34.6                 29.2 11.0              6.8 30.8             24.4
Ghana 11.2                   2.9 * 13.9                 13.4 8.8                7.2 11.3             7.8
India 21.5                    17.0 43.5                 30.7 7.5                5.6 24.2             17.8
Malawi 26.4                   20.0 18.4                 13.8 12.0               7.1 18.9             13.6
Mexico 0.1 *                   0.7 * 3.4                   2.8 2.0                 1.6 <5               <5
Mozambique 39.9                    36.8 21.2                15.6 13.2               9.0 24.8             20.5
Uganda 27.8                    30.1 16.4                14.1 10.9                6.9 18.4             17.0
Peru 21.9                    11.8 5.4                   3.4 2.8                  1.8 10.0              5.7
Senegal 18.4                    21.6 14.5                 15.7 9.9                  6.0 14.3             14.4

* IFPRI estimates

IFPRI: 2013 Global Food Policy Report

Credit: IFPRI

The International Food Policy Research Institute has launched a 2013 Global Food Policy Report yesterday. The report was launched at the event held at the Institute’s Washington, DC main office. Among the speakers during the report launch event were  Dr. Shenggen Fan, Director General of the Institute, and guest speakers Homi Kharas from Brookings Institution, Asma Lateef from Bread for the World institute and Tjada McKenna from the United States Agency for International Development’s (USAIDs) Bureau for Food Security. Dr. Fan presented an overview of the major food policy developments presented in the Report and discussed about post-2015 development efforts that can help achieve the aspirational target of eliminating hunger and undernutrition in a sustainable manner by 2025 (IFPRI, 2014). Following Dr. Fan the guest speakers provided their own perspective on food and nutrition security, and they later responded to participant questions and suggestions.

To download and read the full report, click here.

To download and read the overview booklet, click here.

To watch the full report launching on YouTube, click here.

The release of report is pivotal as the process of defining the  post-2015 agenda and the new sustainable development goals (SDGs) are underway. Among others, the report calls for the need to improve nutrition at a global level and advocates for inclusion of nutrition in policy dialogue and development programs to end hunger and under-nutrition by 2025. According to Fan, “divergent views on agriculture, food, and nutritional goals in the post-2015 framework show that despite good information for debate, we still far from consensus on final decision.” citing the lack of coherence on strategies and goals. Further more, on the path to ending hunger and undernutrition, we should also ensure environmental sustainability(IFPRI, 2013).  The report suggests that the post-2015 agenda needs to be grounded in a multi-sectoral approach that (1) focuses on clear goals and targets, (2) uses comprehensive data and indicators that can be monitored and measured accurately, (3) supports partnerships among all stakeholders, and (4) promotes accountability (IFPRI, 2014).

The following are suggestion on approaches to accelerating the pace of hunger and undernutrition reduction:

– Country-led strategies and investments

– Evidence-based policies and policy experiments

– Knowledge sharing and transfers

– Data revolution, and

– Enhanced role of private sector

 Attention was also given to agriculture which employs majority of the global poor and the role it plays to end hunger and under-nutrition over  the next ten years leading to 2025. “Growth in agriculture sector is shown to reduce poverty three times faster than growth in any other sector-manufacturing, industry, or service.”(IFPRI, 2014). The report discusses how agricultural intensification and innovative farming to accelerate the end of hunger and under-nutrition by 2025. The report states that for  agriculture to address under-nutrition and hunger, scaling-up agricultural production and increasing productivity should couple with production of vegetables, fruits and other nutritious food.

To download the full pdf version of the report, click here.

The following is 2013 Food Policy Timeline (source: IFPRI)