We moeten opnieuw nadenken over de hongerbestrijding

ROME – De wereld heeft een voedingsprobleem. Hoewel er grote stappen zijn gezet op weg naar de Millennium Ontwikkelingsdoelstelling van het halveren van het percentage ondervoede mensen in de ontwikkelingslanden, blijft het probleem hardnekkig, algemeen en complex. Het gaat immers om méér dan louter het ter beschikking stellen van een ruimer voedselaanbod. Effectieve pogingen om de ondervoeding terug te dringen moeten ervoor zorgen dat mensen toegang krijgen tot een toereikend aanbod van de juiste soorten voedsel – waardoor zij de voedingsstoffen binnenkrijgen die ze nodig hebben om gezonde, productieve levens te kunnen leiden.

Sinds 1945 is de voedselproductie verdriedubbeld en is de verkrijgbaarheid van voedsel per persoon gemiddeld met 40% gestegen. Alleen al de afgelopen tien jaar is de groenteteelt in de Aziatisch-Pacifische regio, waar ruim driekwart van 's werelds groente wordt verbouwd, met een kwart gestegen.

Maar ondanks deze vooruitgang in de uitbreiding van het voedselaanbod lijden minstens 805 miljoen mensen nog iedere dag honger; hiervan wonen er 791 miljoen in de ontwikkelingslanden. Nóg meer mensen lijden periodiek honger. En ruim twee miljard mensen lijden aan “verborgen honger” – een gebrek aan één of meer essentiële voedingsstoffen.

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