Caribbean needs final push to achieve World Food Summit goal says FAO

Caribbean needs final push to achieve World Food Summit goal says FAO

Friday, December 12, 2014

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SANTIAGO, Chile (CMC) - The United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) says while Latin America and the Caribbean have achieved 92 per cent progress towards the World Food Summit (WFS) goal of halving the total number of people suffering hunger, a final push is needed to fully achieve it.
According to the FAO’s regional flagship report, for the "Panorama of Food and Nutritional Security 2014", to achieve this goal, 2.75 million people must overcome hunger in the region by 2015.
The report says this requires governments to redouble their efforts, considering that the average reduction over the last 20 years has been 1.4 million people per year.
"Eleven countries in the region have already achieved the World Food Summit goal. Considering the region's renewed commitment to food security, there is reason to believe that during 2015 Latin America and the Caribbean could make this giant leap towards the eradication of hunger," said Raul Benitez, FAO's Regional Representative.
Benitez said that initiatives such as the Plan for Food Security, Nutrition and Hunger Eradication of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) the region's main integration body, can provide the necessary impetus for the region to meet the WFS goal.
He said the plan is expected to be adopted by the upcoming Presidential Summit of CELAC in January 2015.
According to "Panorama 2014", in absolute numbers, hunger in the region fell from 68.5 million to 37 million people in just over 20 years.
It says the greatest reduction has occurred in Latin America – from 60.3 million in 1990-92 to 29.5 million at present; while, in the Caribbean, the decrease was lower: from 8.1 million people to 7.5 million.
As a region, the report says Latin America and the Caribbean has reduced hunger from 15.3 per cent of its total population in 1990-91 to 6.1 per cent in 2012-14, having met the hunger target of the UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) before the 2015 deadline.
The report says 14 countries - Argentina, Barbados, Brazil, Chile, Cuba, Guyana, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru, Dominican Republic, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Uruguay, and Venezuela have managed to achieve this goal; while four others - Bolivia, Colombia, Honduras and Suriname show more than 90 per cent progress towards it.
Despite the fact that there has been greater hunger reduction in Latin America than in the Caribbean, the report says it is important to note that 80 per cent of those who suffer hunger in the entire Latin America and the Caribbean region live in countries of Latin America.
In 2005, the region pioneered a proposal and pledged to eradicate hunger by the year 2025, creating the Hunger Free Latin America and Caribbean Initiative.

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