Hunger Statistics


United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)

2006 report: 854 million undernourished = 12.6% world population of 6.6 billion; 820 million in developing countries

7/08 report: FAO reported an additional 50 million people became undernourished in 2007 due to high food prices

Children's poor nutrition results in 5 million deaths. 32.5% of children in developing nations = 1 in 3 children in developing nation is undernourished - resulting in young brains being permanently handicapped - never to become as strong or bright as God intended - *insert the section on Microtutrients here.

The world produces enough food to feed everyone. World agriculture produces 17 percent more calories per person today than it did 30 years ago, despite a 70 percent population increase. This is enough to provide everyone in the world with at least 2,720 kilocalories (kcal) per person per day (FAO 2002, p.9).  The principal problem is that many people in the world do not have sufficient land to grow, or income to purchase, enough food. - Yet, each country has enough arable land (and usable space) for production enough to feed its own, or at least make a major contribution in nutrition.

Poverty is the principal cause of hunger. The causes of poverty include poor people's lack of resources, an extremely unequal income distribution in the world and within specific countries, conflict, and hunger itself. As of 2008 (2004 statistics), the World Bank has estimated that there were an estimated 982 million poor people in developing countries who live on $1 a day or less (World Bank, Understanding Poverty , Chen 2004). - The bottom billion of the world are more than poor.  They are neglected and persons who have their rights and opportunities deprived.  Mismanagement and restrictions of calaroric resources to adequately feed and improve the lives of this billion are prime examples of what Christ was referring to - "What you have done for the least of these you have done for me...".

Conflict as a cause of hunger and poverty. Most people become refugees or are internally displaced as a result of conflict, though there are also natural causes such as drought, earthquakes, and flooding. In the early stages of refugee emergencies, malnutrition runs rampant, exponentially increasing the risk of disease and death But, important and (relatively) visible though it is, conflict is less important as poverty as a cause of hunger. (Using the statistics above 798 million people suffer from chronic hunger while 22.7 million people are displaced.)

Hunger is also a cause of poverty . By causing poor health, low levels of energy, and even mental impairment, hunger can lead to even greater poverty by reducing people's ability to work and learn.