Food security outlook improves for 76 low- and middle-income countries by 2030 despite income impacts of COVID-19

This bar chart shows the number of food-insecure people in International Food Security Assessment (IFSA) regions, 2020-2030.

More than one-fifth of the 3.8-billion people located in 76 low- and middle-income countries in 2020 may not have consistent access to adequate calories to sustain a healthy and active lifestyle. The International Food Security Assessment (IFSA) models per capita food demand and compares it with a daily 2,100-calorie nutritional target to estimate long-term projections of food security and nutrition. In 2020, the number of people without access to 2,100 calories a day—the food-insecure—is estimated at 844 million. Of those, about 50 percent live in Sub-Saharan African countries, and 44 percent live in Asian countries. By 2030, however, the outlook for food security improves, even considering the income-depressing effects of COVID-19, with the number of food-insecure people projected to fall by 46 percent to 456.8 million. Of the regions evaluated in IFSA, Asia is expected to make the most progress reducing food insecurity in the 10-year period, while Sub-Saharan Africa is projected to improve at the slowest rate. Rising per capita incomes in most countries in the model, combined with relatively low food grain prices, are the expected drivers of the improvement in the food security outlook over the next decade. This chart appears in the Economic Research Service’s International Food Security Assessment, 2020-2030 situation and outlook report.

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