Monday, 19 October 2009 15:04 James O'Toole
HUNDREDS of thousands of Cambodians are among the more than 1 billion people around the world who are dangerously undernourished, the World Food Programme (WFP) said Friday in a statement released to coincide with World Food Day.
“World Food Day is actually ‘No Food Day’ for almost one out of every six people around the world this year,” WFP Executive Director Josette Sheeran said in the statement. Food aid is at its lowest level in two decades, the statement went on to note, and severe weather, high food prices and the global economic downturn continue to pose serious threats to food security in developing nations worldwide.
In Cambodia, high food prices may prevent realisation of the Kingdom’s Millennium Development Goals, the UN said recently in its “Rising Food Prices Discussion Paper”. Although the agriculture sector employs a large number of citizens, Cambodia is nonetheless a net food importer overall, and high prices for agricultural inputs including petrol and fertilizer have contributed to the UN’s conclusion that at present, “rising food prices are not benefiting a significant number of [Cambodian] farmers”.