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Issues in Food Security

by Shahla Shapouri, Stacey Rosen, Keith Wiebe , Michael Trueblood, Mark Nord, Margaret Andrews, Roy Darwin, Paul Heisey, and Lorraine Mitchell

Agriculture Information Bulletin No. (AIB-765) 1 pp, April 2001

Included here are a number of short multidisciplinary issue papers that address how food security in the United States and throughout the world is affected by issues like trade liberalization, income distribution, and natural resources. ERS research shows that more than 800 million people are hungry in 67 lower income countries and even though the number of people affected is expected to decline, the situation may become more severe in the poorer countries. The reasons for food insecurity are many. Noticeably absent from that list, however, is large-scale food scarcity. The growth rate in food production worldwide has surpassed the population growth rate, leading to increased food availability per person. Since 1996, some regions/countries have significantly improved their economic performance and food security situation: several lower income countries in Asia and Latin America are clearly in this group. Sub-Saharan Africa, however, has not seen much progress, nor are its prospects for improvement sanguine. Global trade liberalization is expected to expand market access for the lower income countries and enhance their ability to compete. The multiplicity of forces acting on different nations' prospects for food security means that a broad range of issues must be considered at the global level if countries-and all their households-are to become and remain food secure.

Keywords: Natural resources, crops, food security, food aid, food needs, income distribution, hunger, Sub-Saharan Africa, agricultural productivity

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Last updated: Saturday, May 26, 2012

For more information contact: Shahla Shapouri, Stacey Rosen, Keith Wiebe , Michael Trueblood, Mark Nord, Margaret Andrews, Roy Darwin, Paul Heisey, and Lorraine Mitchell

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