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The members of the
United Nations found great value in the whitepaper you provided on
population growth. They are now asking you to expand the whitepaper to
include global food security as it relates to population growth and
poverty. Read the overview and provide an assessment based on the
can define global food security as the effort to build food systems
that can feed everyone, everywhere, and every day by improving its
quality and promoting nutritional agriculture (1). That said, there are
certain practices that can advance this project:
- Identifying the underlying causes of hunger and malnutrition
- Investing in country-specific recovery plans
- Strengthening strategic coordination with institutions like the UN and the World Bank
- Encouraging developed countries to make sustained financial commitments to its success
must bear in mind that more than 3 billion people—nearly one-half of
the world’s population—subsist on as little as $2.50 a day, with nearly
1.5 billion living in extreme poverty on less than $1.25 a day.
According to the World Health Organization, the United Nations, and
other relief agencies, about 20,000 people (mostly children) starve to
death in the world every day, for a total of about 7 million people a
year. In addition, about 750 million (twice the population of the United
States) do not have access to clean drinking water, meaning that some
one million people die every year from diarrhea caused by water-borne
earth’s population has grown since it reached 7 billion in 2010. It is
expected to reach 8 billion in 2025, 9 billion in 2040, and 11 billion
by the end of the 21st century (2). If the demand for food is
predicted to rise 50% by 2030 and 70% by 2050, the real problem is not
necessarily growing enough food, but rather making that amount available
to people. Moreover, food illnesses are prevalent, with nearly 600
million reported cases of foodborne diseases each year. These mainly
affect children but can also negatively impact the livelihood of
farmers, vendors, trade associations, and ultimately, can reduce the
Gross Domestic Product (national income) of a country. These issues can
impose tremendous human, economic, social, and fiscal costs on
countries, so addressing them allows governments to devote more
resources to making desperately needed infrastructure improvements that
raise the quality of life for everyone.
is not enough to have adequate supplies of food available. Policies
that focus exclusively on food production can exacerbate the problem,
particularly if, to satisfy the need for quantity, the quality of the
food is left wanting.
Reasons for Food Insecurity
poverty and the contributing systemic internal conditions are the
driving factors behind keeping adequate food resources from reaching
people, but it is only one of several. Others are discussed next.
Inadequate Food Distribution:
The reality is that there is more than enough food in the world to feed
its people, but the primary cause of famine is not poor weather
conditions as much as it is getting the food to the people who need it
most. Quite often, disruptions in food distribution result from
political instability and poor infrastructure (such as poorly
functioning port facilities, lack of transportation options, and
inadequate road networks). Paradoxically, although the world’s
population is increasing, the amount of potential food available will
increase along with it, due mostly to advances in bio-agricultural
engineering and seed immunity to molds.
in the late 18th century, Thomas Malthus warned that the global
population would exceed the earth’s capacity to grow food, in that while
the population would grow exponentially, food production would grow
only arithmetically. Although this theory was proved invalid, its
propagation has unfortunately resulted in some governments rationalizing
political choices that avoid helping the poverty-ridden and starving.
Political-Agricultural Practices: The
widespread use of microbiological, chemical, and other forms of
pesticides in food continues to be a serious issue throughout the global
food chain. Widespread use of fertilizers also causes illness in
millions of people every year, not only from the food itself, but from
run-off into streams and rivers, contaminating entire water supplies.
The human, social, fiscal, and economic costs of such practices impede
improvements not only in the raising of crops, but in their
distribution. Added to this, the rising demand in developed countries
for biofuels, refined mostly from corn and soybean, reduces the amount
of arable land devoted to producing food.
failure of many farmers in the developing world to rotate their crops
harms the replenishing of nutrients necessary to continue growing crops.
In addition, neglecting to allow land to remain fallow exhausts the
soil, making it much more difficult to raise a decent amount of food per
acre the following growing season.
The fact is, government policies that focus on growing cash crops, for
example, are designed solely to export them to earn foreign exchange.
This may be fine for the government in its effort to earn money, but the
result is that farmers end up growing for foreign markets and not
domestic ones, leading to shortages of necessary staples. Consequently,
the poorest of the population are frozen out of the local markets
because they cannot afford the food that remains to be sold (3).
Civil Strife: Civil
war can interrupt the flow of food from gathering depots, such as
ports, to distribution centers where it can be handed out to people.
During the 1990s, Somalia was particularly hard hit by their civil war,
as clans fought for control of the main port at Mogadishu, which
affected the flow of food to the rest of the population. In this case,
as with many civil wars, whoever controls the supply of food controls
the country. In failed and failing states like Zimbabwe, Congo, Haiti,
South Sudan, Yemen, and Libya, food is very often another weapon used by
one segment of the population against another.
1.Peter Timmer. 2015. Food Security and Scarcity: Why Ending Hunger Is So Hard. Foreign Affairs magazine.
2.The United Nations Population Division. 2017. World Population Prospects: The 2017 Revision. https://www.un.org/development/desa/publications/world-population-prospects-the-2017-revision.html
3.Will Martin. November 2010. Food Security and Poverty: A Precarious Balance. Let’s Talk Development blog by The World Bank. http://blogs.worldbank.org/developmenttalk/food-security-and-poverty-a-precarious-balance
issue is not the lack of food in the world, but the access to food. In
many developing countries, the food shortage is due to governmental
control over food. These governments maintain control and preference by
limiting access of nutritious food to certain groups, thereby
this second assignment, research the impact of poverty on global food
security and the potential technological solutions. Write a minimum of four pages (not including the cover letter) assessing the impact of food insecurity. Select one
country from the United Nations list of developing countries to use as
an example throughout your assessment. The completed version of this
assignment will include the following items:
- Cover page: Include
your name, title of course, name of the developing country you have
chosen from the UN list, current date, and the name of your instructor.
- Introduction: Introduce the topic of the whitepaper (half-page minimum).
- One-page (minimum) answers to each of the following questions (for a total of three pages):
- What is food insecurity, and what role does population growth play in it?
- What specific factors interrupt the flow of food from the source to the people in the developing country you selected?
forms of technology can be used to reduce hunger and improve food
security? Explain how these technological solutions would work.
Note: Give examples in your responses to each of the above questions as it relates to the developing country you have chosen.
- Conclusion: A one-half page (minimum) conclusion.
at least five credible sources excluding Wikipedia, dictionaries, and
encyclopedias for your assessment. A brief list of suggested resources
has been provided at the end of the course guide.