Every year, 150 countries recognise World Food Day on 16th October to draw awareness to food poverty worldwide and this year’s theme is “Leave NO ONE behind”. Despite the progress we have made as a global community, unfortunately, too many people are unable to benefit from the steps we’ve taken and are suffering because of it.
The current situation
Globally, 828 million people have insufficient food, which makes up 10% of the population according to Action Against Hunger, despite the fact there is enough food produced to feed everyone on the planet. The Trussell Trust has found that, here in the UK, more than 14 million people are living in poverty – including 4.5 million children.
What has caused this?
The FAO (Food and Agriculture Organisation) reports that international food insecurity has been caused and worsened by several issues such as conflict, climate variability and extremes, and economic slowdowns and downturns, which has been exacerbated by the pandemic.
While in the UK the leading causes of food poverty are low incomes, combined with rising livings costs, cuts to Universal Credit and the benefits system, and cuts to funding for local social care services.
Understanding the causes of food poverty is the first step in putting an end to it, now it’s time to direct our attention to the solutions.
What can be done to tackle food poverty?
To tackle food insecurity as a global community, the FAO has recommended six pathways:
- Integrating humanitarian, development, and peacebuilding policies in conflict-affected areas
- Scaling up climate resilience across food systems
- Strengthening the resilience of the most vulnerable to economic adversity
- Intervening along the food supply chains to lower the cost of nutritious foods
- Tackling poverty and structural inequalities, ensuring interventions are pro-poor and inclusive
- Strengthening food environments and changing consumer behaviour to promote dietary patterns with positive impacts on human health and the environment.
While these recommendations are incredibly helpful and essential to make strides globally, they can seem a bit overwhelming and make it hard to know where to start for us, as individuals.
So, what can we do?
- Volunteer at a charity against food poverty
- Support a local food bank with food or financial donations
- If you’re a business owner, or work with a food business, look into how you can donate any excess food
- Organise a fundraising event for one of the amazing charities working to put an end to food poverty
The time has come for us all to come together as members of global and local communities and “leave no one behind”. Here at Kitchen by Liquid, we’re proud to support our local food banks, such as Feedo Needo, and encourage everyone to do their bit to tackle food poverty.
We’d love to hear how you’re acknowledging World Food Day or any advice you have for fighting food poverty. Let us know on social media!