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By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

3/11/2014 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

UN report: One-in-four children malnourished, conflicts likely by 2050.

Despite strong efforts to end world hunger, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization is warning that food production will need to dramatically increase by 2050, or the world will face serious conflicts.

A hungry child weeps. Such scenes may become more common not less by 2050.

A hungry child weeps. Such scenes may become more common not less by 2050.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

3/11/2014 (1 year ago)

Published in Asia Pacific

Keywords: UN, food, agriculture, supply, distribution, scandal, Pope Francis, hungry, malnourished


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - A worrisome report by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization predicts that food production may not keep pace with population increases and dietary changes as some people become wealthier and consume more calories.

Up to half-a-billion people could be chronically hungry in Asia alone, according to the report.

Do your part to help Pope Francis end world hunger.

Already, it is Asia, not Africa, which suffers the most from malnourishment and hunger.

Developing nations, according to the report, need to boost their food production rated by 77 percent just to meet projected demand by 2050.

Currently, the world has 842 million undernourished people, according to the UN. Two-thirds of those people live in Asia. Other reports show that possibly over a billion people in the world suffer from some form of food insecurity, meaning that some people may not be hungry now, but face food shortages in the near future as a result of poor weather or conflict, or economic risk factors.

One-in-four children around the world under five is stunted due to malnutrition.

A major part of the problem is that food production is not keeping pace with demand, and is dropping off from typical levels of growth.

The report explains that in the 1980s, food production in the developing world increased by 3.5 percent annually, and in the 20 years previously, that figure moderated to about 0.6 to 0.8 percent. Projections say that the number needs to be about 1 percent in order to keep pace with population growth and other demands, so if the trend does not improve, the world food supply will slowly shrink.

Other problems mentioned by the report include extreme variations in the weather over the past several years. The report suggests this could be a result of global climate change. As the Earth's overall temperature increases, even in tiny increments, the amount of energy in the atmosphere and oceans is increased which can lead to more frequent weather events.

Weather has destroyed harvests in the past three years in Australia, Canada, China, Russia, and the United States. Floods and droughts have been cited as the primary causes.

Finally, increasing development around the world means that some populations are increasing their daily intake of calories. This places additional demands on food resources.

Pope Francis referenced other problems with food distribution when he gave a speech launching his global campaign of 'Prayer and Action' to end world hunger by 2025. Pope Francis pointed out that the world does produce enough food, but it is distributed scandalously.

Other threats to food supplies include fuel shocks, especially oil, which can increase the price of food production.

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Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


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Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for March 2015
Universal:
Scientists: That those involved in scientific research may serve the well-being of the whole human person.
Evangelization: Contribution of women: That the unique contribution of women to the life of the Church may be recognized always.


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