Over the lifespan, we need to consume vital nutrients alone to maintain good health. A lot of people, young and old, suffer from periods of food insecurity and are currently experiencing it. Their next meal is unsure where or when. Policies and community efforts need to be made to provide education and access based on the impacts on health, development, and behaviour. Starting with Food Insecurity, let’s speak more about this.
What is food insecurity?
Food insecurity is the result of a lack of money or other resources that leads to disruption of foodstuffs intake or eating patterns. A food security program for family and community members means providing a sufficient amount of good, healthy, and culturally appropriate food. In other words, it means you and your family aren’t concerned about your next meal, where they will get their food from, or sacrificing healthy food in order to pay your bills. It is unlikely that food insecurity leads to hunger; however, this is a possible consequence.
There are a number of components to food insecurity that means we cannot have it in isolation. Low-income families might deal with some of the same issues while simultaneously facing more than one of them: social isolation, acute and chronic health conditions, affordable housing, high medical costs, less than fair wage, and inadequate health insurance coverage. Food insecurity will almost certainly be a consequence of these factors, thus making it a complex and potentially dangerous condition of living.
What causes food insecurity?
A number of factors are responsible for food insecurity. And if we try to find out a solution then we will be Battling Food Insecurity properly.
- Unaffordability of agricultural land
The soil is used to grow and produce food. In this process, income is generated. Most people don’t own farmland, or have access to farmland they can work on. Agriculture productivity increases as small-scale landowners can plant a variety of crops at low costs. However, without access to farmland, food crops cannot be produced.
- Grabbing of land
A degree of similarity is present in this issue. Whenever land traditional to a family or community is taken from them, some wealthy investors or influential officials commit land grabs.
In addition to expanding their empires, they acquire the land to cultivate crops for export or to extract resources. Land grabbing prevents local communities from cultivating the roots of foods for survival. As a result, food insecurity further increases, which leads to poverty and social instability.
- War, Conflict, and Violence
Food production and supplies are affected by conflicts, wars, and violence. Many countries that have experienced civil war in the past have seen a high rate of food insecurity.
The Somalia and South Sudanian cases illustrate this. A recent example may be the effect of the conflict on Syria’s agricultural production. FAO data from 2018 October indicates that 5.5 million Syrians go hungry every year and that is partly due to the conflict. Food shortages from conflict sometimes lead to years of food shortages even after the conflict ends.
- Rules of Unfair Trade
Large corporations remain unequal in dealing with local food producers due to the unfair way their labor is paid and their produce is not recognized.
Small-scale farmers are often forced to work as laborers on contracted farms, although better-resourced farmers may get food supply contracts. People who are not financially stable or Small-scale farmers are particularly vulnerable to food insecurity as a result of such practices.
- Fast-growing Population
There are more births in the world than deaths in the world, even though the death rate is higher. More and more people need to be fed daily because of population growth. In a time of rapid population growth, coupled with a decline in the supply of food, food insecurity increases.
- Changes in climate
The causes of climate change in agriculture are profound. In recent years, farmers have experienced an increase in rainfall, and droughts have become more prolonged. The availability of freshwater has also increased due to rising sea levels, cyclones, storm surges, and weather events, which are becoming more common and intense.
- Nature’s Disasters
The effects of natural disasters last far into the future: drought, floods, typhoons, cyclones, and so on. This is especially devastating for rural families and communities, who often have their daily food supplies supplied by small-scale farming and these kinds of harvests.
What are the effects of food insecurity?
Listed below are some of the consequences of food insecurity:
- How It Affects Children?
Food insecure children or those belonging to families with food insecurity require hospitalization for serious illnesses like asthma and anemia, which are more prevalent in these groups. Also, it is common for them to experience oral problems.
Poor physical growth and development of children can result from food insecurity. This result causes them to be less active in daily schoolwork and social interaction.
- Hunger is a result of food insecurity.
Food insecurity can also lead to hunger. Approximately $178.9 billion is spent every year on hunger in the US by the UN each year.
Consequently, the government spends more resources on the nation’s food and infrastructure, in place of concentrating the money on healthcare, infrastructure, and education.
- Food Price Increases
A shortage of food is the result of food insecurity, making food available that is significantly more expensive to buy. It will result in higher prices and more expensive related items. Additionally, people might also have difficulty getting food, care, feed, and healthcare..
- The unemployment rate
Economic growth will sputter when food security is problematic for a nation. The result of this will be more people without jobs, fewer wages, and more losses.
- Violence and Conflict
The opposite is true of violence causing food insecurity. When food prices rise, food insecurity is a warning that leads to violence and conflicts. Even though food insecurity alone won’t cause violent conflict, when combined with other causes, such as in the economic or political spheres, it could be the leading cause.
Battling Food Insecurity: How can we end food insecurity?
No region is immune to food insecurity, and the worldwide number affects about 820 million people every year. As a challenge, global institutions and governments have used all feasible means to combat food insecurity.
The United Nations has set up provisions for achieving them by 2030. Ending hunger and improving nutrition, battling food security, and through agriculture are the secondary objectives of the program.
Therefore, it is up to everyone to Battling Food Insecurity before 2030, including individuals, families, groups, organizations, corporations, institutions, and governments. Most countries and institutions did very little to address food insecurity, but hopes are mounting for a more secure future. Below are a few ways to Battling Food Insecurity.
- Don’t waste food
- Commercializing is Risky
- Invest in improving existing infrastructure
- Improvements in Trade Policies
- Diversification is important
- The Yield Gap Must Be Closed
- Defeating Climate Change
Thank you for your support and attention to this critical topic. You can donate to your charity of choice that may support programs battling food insecurity by using your PhilRx Drug Discount Card. Just download the app for iOS or Android.