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The Americas Are Under Threat Of A ‘Food Pandemic’

The Americas Are Under Threat Of A ‘Food Pandemic’

Akmal Hakim

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With the threat of a deadly viral plague still looming around, the American continent is now at the face of a “hunger pandemic”.

The United Nations (UN) warns that more than 80 million people living in extreme poverty in Latin America and the Caribbean are under threat of starvation as the Covid-19 pandemic ravages the global economy.

UN’s World Food Programme (WFP) is calling for international solidarity in order to protect the people living within the region.

Experts say that the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic may result in the largest Gross Domestic Product (GDP) drop in countries within the region, pushing more people into unemployment, poverty and creating severe food insecurities as people have no money to buy food.

People are also being forced to opt for cheaper foods that have less nutritional value.

Farming and agriculture has also taken a big hit from climate change.
(Credit: Union of Concerned Scientist)

To counter this problem, the UN proposes the implementation of an Emergency Basic Income (EBI) to help support people living in extreme poverty.

Calling it the Anti-Hunger Grant (AHG) the aid program would provide assistance via means of cash, food baskets or food stamps to 70% of the population living in the regional extreme poverty line for a period of six months.

The grant would include measures to ensure households in the region to not only have access to good, nutritious foods but would also keep the global food trade going by supplementing local economies.

The WFP has so far delivered around 70 metric tonnes of humanitarian supplies to 27 countries in the region.


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