Food crisis strains aid groups

The World

The UN World Food Program issues an annual report on world food aid and this year’s report paints a bleak picture. It describes a wave of food price inflation moving across the globe, leaving in its wake massive hunger. This analyst notes that food aid fell to its lowest level in almost 50 years and he says the reasons are clear: that organizations like WFP have a set budget and if food prices increase it limits how far that budget can go, we can buy less food for the same amount of money. At the same time, the need for emergency assistance is rising and emergency supplies are at an all time low, says this observer. Oxfam’s response has been to work with countries to boost crop production, but those sorts of initiatives take time, so Oxfam has had to make some tough decisions. The WFP faces a budget shortfall of $3 billion dollars and this expert says this year won’t be the only tough one. This analyst with Doctors Without Borders says a potential upside might be a new model for food aid. That’s a tough sell when it comes to meeting emergency food needs.

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