The United Nations food agency estimates that 21,000 people die every day of hunger around the world. That comes to over seven million people, mostly young children, every year. That’s in normal times without a pandemic!
And now the U.N. says that the pandemic could turn this into “multiple famines of biblical proportions” within a few months. The coronavirus makes getting food supplies to people who need them much harder than it was just a few months ago. Wars in Yemen and Syria, natural disasters and ongoing economic crises in Ethiopia, Sudan, Congo, Lebanon, and other countries are bad enough, but COVID-19 is making things so bad that 130 million more people “could be pushed to the brink of starvation by the end of 2020.”
All of this is happening while crops and milk are destroyed in the U.S. and other parts of the profit-driven food system break down because the profiteers can’t seem to find markets for their goods. For a century, the world has had the physical capacity to produce enough food for all its people, while starvation grew among the poor, especially in Africa, because the big food industries refused to feed them without a profit.
Now, with COVID-19, if indeed 130 million people face starvation, how many will die? The world can’t afford to leave the profiteers in charge!
Featured image credit: The Irish Times