UNA-UK has joined the Enough Food for Everyone IF Campaign - a coalition of over 200 British NGOs and charities calling for decisive action to end hunger.
At present, enough food is produced to feed the global population, yet almost one billion people go to bed hungry each night. Hunger and malnutrition is set to increase, projected to affect over 900 million children alone by 2025. In addition to destroying lives, malnutrition is expected to cost developing countries as much as $125bn a year in lost economic output.
The Campaign has four objectives:
- Provide aid in order to prevent hunger-related deaths and ensure there is enough food for the poorest
- Prevent farmers from losing their lands, and support the cultivation of food crops instead of fuel
- Avoid tax evasion by companies in poor countries
- Ensure transparency and honesty by companies about their actions
Ahead of the UK 2013 budget announcement, the IF Campaign had called vigorously for the UK to meet the target of spending 0.7% of national income on international aid. The Campaign was delighted at Chancellor George Osborne's confirmation on 20 March that the UK would meet this long-standing target in 2013-14.While the efficacy of aid has rightly come under scrutiny, research by IF Campaign members has shown that countries receiving significant amounts of aid have typically managed to reduce childhood undernutrition by an additional two percent over ten years, and infant mortality by an additional four deaths per 1,000, compared to countries receiving little aid. If replicated across sub-Saharan Africa, this could save the lives of 63,000 children a year, and prevent 2.7 million from being undernourished.
The Campaign will now turn its attention to the June 2013 G8 summit, with several hunger-focussed actions planned for the lead-up to the event. It will also petition the UK to use its presidency to prioritise and initiate action on addressing hunger and malnutrition worldwide.