Pakistan has been ranked 99th out of 121 nations in the Global Hunger Index (GHI) report, signifying a “serious” level of hunger.
The report, compiled by German non-profit Welthungerhilfe and its Irish counterpart Concern Worldwide, highlights a global food crisis exacerbated by conflicts, climate change, and the COVID-19 pandemic, leaving millions vulnerable to food shortages.
Global Hunger Index (GHI) report
South Asia has the highest hunger level, with the highest rates of child stunting and wasting.
The GHI is an annual report that raises awareness about hunger struggles. Various organizations, including Welthungerhilfe and Concern Worldwide, collaborate to address food insecurity issues in cooperation with civil society, governments, and the private sector.
High Concerns Over Pakistan
A UN report issued in May also expressed “very high concern” about food insecurity in Pakistan, stating that over eight million people are expected to experience “high levels of acute food insecurity.”
Factors contributing to Pakistan’s food crisis include political upheaval, a continuing political crisis, and the financial crisis the country is facing.
Devastating floods and mounting balance-of-payment issues have severely impacted the economy, leading to depleted foreign reserves and significant inflation.
Affordability is a major concern, as reduced purchasing power hampers access to food. To address this, the government must slow inflation and focus on improving affordability and boosting productivity.
Additionally, Pakistan faces challenges in domestic wheat production and relies on imports, making it unlikely to become domestically sufficient in wheat production soon.
The country lacks adequate research facilities and skills to develop better seeds for higher yields.
To mitigate the effects of the rising food crisis many welfare agencies like the King Salman Humanitarian Aid have offered aid to the needy in Pakistan by sending food rations.
Although these efforts are vital, it is important that the government also takes the necessary action to prevent such situations in the first place.