Food Scarcity

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Food scarcity refers to the unavailability of adequate food for the entire world population. However, it does not only mean the limited quantity of food, but also the economic inaccessibility of food. While there are millions of people struggling with obesity, there are more than a billion people starving due to food scarcity. Some countries have excess food for their populations while others are struggling to obtain enough food to sustain their people.

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There are two types of food scarcity; transitory insecurity and chronic food insecurity. Transitory food insecurity refers to the unavailability of food during some seasons or periods of time. It is the temporary lack of food or a sudden reduction in the capacity to produce food (Jha 7). The shortage in production or access is caused by short-term shocks such as droughts and natural disasters. The shocks have the ability to disrupt food production patterns. Also, civil conflicts can cause some populations to experience reduced access to food. Market instability that results in price hikes and the loss of employment can also contribute to transitory food insecurity (Ingram et al. 88-89).

Chronic food insecurity is the permanent or long-term lack of ample food. Communities and families are continuously unable to get food that meets the needs of everyone. The chronic insecurity results from the prolonged periods of drought, poverty, and lack of a access to production resources (Ingram et al. 88-89). Chronic food insecurity is common in the developing countries. However, the effects of the insecurity are incomparable to the famines of 1970s and populations do not necessarily perish in large numbers. Most of the populations affected by chronic food insecurity depend on assistance and donations from organizations and governments.

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There are various strategies that can be used to solve the world food crisis. The main cause of food crisis is poverty and inadequate income. As a result, an effective solution would be to empower individuals and families and help them transition from poverty to a state of being self-dependent. Organizations and governments can increase access to credits to people in the poor countries. The credit can be in form of loans to be repaid (Patterson). They can also fund projects that aim to transform agriculture. The projects can be communal or for every household and can help people to produce food in a sustainable way. Food donations can also have a significant impact on the world food crisis. Although it is not a permanent solution to self-sustainability, the cash and food donated can save lives (Patterson).

Improving access to education is the most effective solution against hunger and poverty. If the entire populations in the developing underdeveloped countries are provided with education, they can have more opportunities for employment and income. Schools should emphasize agricultural education that would teach students some of the effective methods of farming and food production (Patterson). There is also a need for social change and governments should focus on addressing detrimental social issues such as war and conflicts. When there is no peace, productivity reduces and access to food becomes a challenge. Lastly, women should be empowered and populations should be provided with reproduction and birth control education. Birth control education can enable parents to have children that they can raise without relying on help (Patterson).

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  1. Ingram, John et al. Food Security And Global Environmental Change. 1st ed., Routledge, 2012.
  2. Jha, Mrityunjay M. Food Security: Dynamics & Dimensions. New Delhi: Northern Book Centre, 2003. Print.
  3. Patterson, Zachary. “10 Ways To Stop World Hunger”. The Borgen Project, 2013.
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