KUALA LUMPUR, July 19 — The United Nations has announced that reaching the target of zero hunger by 2030 will be challenging to meet when more than 820 million people worldwide still go hungry.
This number has risen for the third year in a row while the world population has increased significantly.
Millions of children are suffering from malnutrition, with not much progress being made in reducing the number of child stunting and babies born underweight.
Obesity continues to increase across the world. Globally, there are 338 million school going children and adolescents who are overweight and 672 million obese adults.
Many of them are in Africa and Asia, where nine out of 10 of all stunted children are living. The region also is where three-quarters of the world’s overweight children. Undernourishment in Asia affects 11 per cent of the population. Although southern Asia saw great progress over the last five years, it is still the sub-region with the highest prevalence of undernourishment.
Hunger in Latin America and the Caribbean is still below seven per cent, and is slowly increasing.
One in seven babies globally were born with low birthweight, many of them to adolescent mothers.
Hunger is increasing in countries where there is income inequality.
“Many countries, however, have not witnessed sustained growth as part of this new economy. The world economy as a whole is not growing as much as expected,” the report states.
The UN agencies involved in issuing the report were the UN Food and Agriculture Organization, the International Fund for Agricultural Development, the UN Children’s Fund (Unicef), the World Food Programme and the World Health Organization.