Hunger in the news

8 November 2010

Cyclone Giri has left 86,000 farming households and thousands of casual labourers, who had depended on the now devastated annual harvest, without any hope of cash. “Right away we need to find ways to help people generate income,” Sanaka Sanarasinha, deputy resident representative at the UN Development Programme (UNDP) in Myanmar, told IRIN.

5 November 2010

NO MATTER who you vote for, as a wag once wrote, the government always gets in. (..) The World Food Programme, which has sporadic access to some of the worst areas, estimates that the vast majority of people have to spend over 75% of their income on food. The Harvard study reported that cooking oil was being sold by the spoonful to those who could not afford a larger measure. In Asia only Afghanistan has a higher rate of child mortality. Almost one in ten children in Myanmar do not make it to five.

2 September 2010

Myanmar’s military government, with soldiers scattered throughout the country, is arbitrarily levying fees from the rural poor, pushing some into hunger and debt, experts say. (..)Ten percent of the country is food insecure, with more than 90 percent persistently on the brink of hunger in some regions, according to the World Food Programme and the Food and Agriculture Organization.

23 June 2010

Thousands of people were still missing and at least half a million houses and buildings were reported damaged a week after torrential rains and landslides hit northwestern Burma's Arakan State, according to the latest reports by relief agencies. (..) Since many people lost their food stocks during the floods, the Word Food Program (WFP) has also started distributing rice and oil to the victims. The WFP plans to distribute 1079 tons of food to the affected households. A total of 400 tons of food have already been distributed.

22 June 2010

United Nations aid officials are in Geneva trying to drum up support from international donors for the desperate needs of hundreds of thousands of people in Burma (..). WFP and the Food and Agriculture Organization carried out an assessment at the end of last year. Country Director and Representative, Chris Kaye, says the survey finds 10 percent of the population falls below the food poverty line. He says that means five million people are food insecure.

24 May 2010

Two years after the destruction caused by Cyclone Nargis created a rare opening for foreign assistance into Myanmar, aid workers say they still face numerous operating challenges. (..) “There are issues that we are considering and discussing with the government now which we wouldn’t have thought possible before Nargis,” Chris Kaye, country representative for the World Food Programme (WFP) in Myanmar, told IRIN.

19 March 2010

A failure to repair crucial flood embankments damaged by Cyclone Nargis could undo recovery efforts and lead to more loss of life if another major storm hits, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization warns.  Cyclone Nargis devastated the Ayeyarwady and Yangon divisions in May 2008, killing at least 140,000 and affecting 2.4 million. More than 780,000ha of paddy fields were submerged and 707,500MT of stored paddy and milled rice destroyed.

7 January 2010

The World Food Program (WFP) has pledged to offer further help to Chin state in western Burma plagued by rat infestation and other natural disasters leading to food shortage over the last three years. Swe Swe Win, program officer of WFP’s office in Burma’s former capital Rangoon on Tuesday said, WFP will continue its assistance program in the country including Chin State under the new Protracted Relief and Recovery Operation (PRRO) (..).

30 December 2009

Britain’s renowned “Curry King” has been giving poor refugee women in Bangladesh lessons on concocting nutritious dishes using United Nations food rations along with locally grown fruit and vegetables. “I believe that the tips and stories that I have shared will give women leaders the confidence to develop positive health behaviours in their homes and community,” star chef Tommy Miah said, thanking the UN World Food Programme (WFP) for organizing the event.

7 December 2009

In the remote western Chin state, Ngite Pan, 46, ekes out an existence, feeding herself and her 15-year-old daughter by planting millet. (..) Most of the population relies on shifting cultivation for their livelihoods. However, there are limited viable farmlands and growing population pressures, in turn leading to shorter field rotation cycles, poor soil fertility and crop yields, according to the World Food Programme (WFP).