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The Declaration is thus a starting point for renewed action in the twenty-first century.The International Conference on Financing for Development can redress the failures and biases of the past by making its prime objective that of ensuring adequate funding for the achievement of the MDGs.3.
Progress in reducing the number of undernourished has been alarmingly slow.
The target set at the 1996 World Food Summit was to halve the number of undernourished people by 2015 from their number in 1990-92.
The paper shows how widespread hunger is an impediment to overall growth and poverty reduction efforts. What is the relationship between hunger and poverty?
The paper emphasizes that mobilizing and carefully deploying resources where the impact can be greatest, is fundamental to the effort to reduce poverty, hunger and food insecurity. The next two sections address these questions and emphasize the urgency of the fight to reduce hunger.6.
Most of today's armed conflicts and natural disasters are concentrated in regions heavily dependent on agriculture and in countries with a high proportion of food-insecure households and classified by FAO as "low-income food deficit".15.
As well as being a consequence of a conflict, food insecurity can be the cause and lead to conflict.Hunger and poverty will remain at unacceptable levels unless purposeful action is taken to give them higher policy priority and to mobilise resources towards fighting them directly and towards agriculture and rural development. Placing the MDGs at the centre of Financing for Development is a step in the right direction.13.Widespread hunger and malnutrition in a world of plentiful food implies that extreme poverty is the root cause of undernourishment.On the basis of current trends it will be 2030 before that target is achieved.FAO projections show that none of the world's developing regions will achieve the WFS target; only the two Asian sub-regions will come close (Figure 2). Number of Undernourished : Actual and FAO Baseline Projections Source: FAO 2000, 2001b11.It is not always understood, however, that hunger and malnutrition (including micronutrient deficiencies) are in turn major causes of poverty.They affect the ability of individuals to escape poverty in several ways (Box 1) through: Chronically undernourished people are, therefore, caught in a hunger trap of low productivity, chronic poverty and hunger. During the last decade, food insecurity and malnutrition appear to have contributed to an increasing frequency of crisis events as well as to the vulnerability of countries to shocks.Work in FAO shows that world agriculture can produce enough to feed humanity in the future without putting excessive pressure on prices or the environment.The existence of 780 million chronically hungry people in the developing world today shows that there is something fundamentally wrong in the distribution of food and the resources with which to access it.12.The latest data show that the number of undernourished is falling by 6 million a year.This means that the annual rate of reduction has to be stepped up to 22 million for the target to be met.