The UN annual report of the State of Food Insecurity in the World (SOFI 2014) has said that Yemen is one of the most food-insecure countries in the world.
"Conflict, economic downturn, low agricultural productivity and poverty have made Yemen one of the most food-insecure countries in the world", according to the SOFI 2014 report published on Tuesday by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the World Food Programme (WFP).
"Besides restoring political security and economic stability, the government aims to reduce hunger by one-third by 2015 and to make 90 percent of the population food-secure by 2020."
The report showed that the government also "aims to reduce the current critical rates of child malnutrition by at least one percentage point per year."
At the global level, the report pointed out that about 805 million people in the world, or one in nine, suffer from hunger. The overall trend in hunger reduction in developing countries means that the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) of halving the proportion of undernourished people by 2015 is within reach. "If appropriate and immediate efforts are stepped up," the report said. To date, 63 developing countries have reached the MDG target, and six more are on track to reach it by 2015.
"Despite significant progress overall, several regions and sub-regions continue to lag behind. In Sub-Saharan Africa, more than one in four people remain chronically undernourished, while Asia, the world's most populous region, is also home to the majority of the hungry - 526 million people", the report said.
With the number of undernourished people remaining "unacceptably high", the heads of FAO, IFAD and WFP, José Graziano da Silva, Kanayo F. Nwanze and Ertharin Cousin stressed the need to renew the political commitment to tackle hunger and to transform it into concrete actions. In this context, they welcomed the pledge at the 2014 African Union summit in June to end hunger on the continent by 2025."
"The FAO, IFAD and WFP report specifies that hunger eradication requires establishing an enabling environment and an integrated approach. Such an approach includes public and private investments to increase agricultural productivity; access to land, services, technologies and markets; and measures to promote rural development and social protection for the most vulnerable, including strengthening their resilience to conflicts and natural disasters. The report also emphasizes the importance of specific nutrition programmes, particularly to address micronutrient deficiencies of mothers and children under five."
This year's report includes seven case studies - Bolivia, Brazil, Haiti, Indonesia, Madagascar, Malawi and Yemen - that highlight some of the ways that countries tackle hunger and how external events may influence their capacity to deliver on achieving food security and nutrition objectives. The countries were chosen because of their political, economic - particularly in the agricultural sector - diversities, and cultural differences.
The findings and recommendations of SOFI 2014 will be discussed by governments, civil society, and private sector representatives at the 13-18 October meeting of the Committee on World Food Security, at FAO headquarters in Rome.
The report will also be a focus of the Second International Conference on Nutrition (ICN2) in Rome from 19-21 November, which FAO is jointly organizing with the World Health Organization. This high-level intergovernmental meeting seeks, at a global level, renewed political commitment to combat malnutrition with the overall goal of improving diets and raising nutrition levels.