What causes hunger?

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Major:English writing
Reference:APA style
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Reading: ‘What causes hunger?’

Pre-reading task:
In groups, brainstorm three causes of world hunger. Choose one person to write down the
three causes and another person to report back to the teacher.
During reading task:
Individually, read each section of the article. When you have finished each section, as a
group, agree on a heading to go in the box for the section below.
Vocabulary task:
Find the word in the below paragraphs that matches the definition
Para Word Definition
2 Adj: 1. having all parts linked

3 Adv: in a persistent and recurring way

3 Adj: Suffering from lack of food or a lack of healthy

food

5 Noun: 1. the basic physical and organisational facilities
(e.g. buildings, roads, power supplies) needed for
the operation of a society or enterprise

5 Adj: 1. not able to be depended on

10 Adj: producing or capable of producing healthy

vegetation or crops

10 Noun: 1. the process of being worn down by wind, water,

or other natural agents

10 Noun: the process of increasing the salt content of soil
10 Noun: 1. the process by which fertile land becomes desert

10 Noun: 1. the action of clearing a wide area of trees.

11 Adj: o forced to leave their home, typically because of

war, persecution, or natural disaster.

12 Past tense of verb: 1. to have made something impure by contact with

a poisonous or polluting substance.
14 Adj: o likely to change; not firmly established.
15 Noun plural: Lack or shortages

What Causes Hunger?
World Food Program. (2017). What causes Hunger? Retrieved from
https://www.wfp.org/stories/what-causes-hunger

This girl's upper-arm circumference reveals that she is malnourished — she hasn't been receiving the nutrition she
needs to grow up healthy. Malnutrition is a key dimension of global hunger.
The world produces enough to feed the entire global population of 7 billion people. And yet,
one person in eight on the planet goes to bed hungry each night. So why does hunger exist?
ROME — There are many reasons for the presence of hunger in the world and they are often
interconnected. Here are six that we think are important.

 

People living in poverty can't afford nutritious food for themselves and their families. This
makes them weaker, physically and mentally, so they are less able to earn the money that
would help them escape poverty and hunger. The effects can be long-lasting. Children who
are chronically malnourished, or ‘stunted’, often grow up to be adults whose incomes are
lower. They are condemned to a life of poverty and hunger.
Similarly, in developing countries, farmers often can't afford seeds, so they cannot plant the
crops that would provide for their families. They may have to cultivate crops without the
tools and fertilizers they need. Others have no land or water or education. In short, the poor
are hungry and their hunger traps them in poverty.

Too many developing countries lack the roads, warehouses and irrigation systems that
would help them overcome hunger. Without this key infrastructure, communities are left
facing high transport costs, a lack of storage facilities and unreliable water supplies — all of
which conspire to limit farmers' yields and families' access to food.
Investments in improving land management, using water more efficiently and making more
resistant seed types available can bring big improvements.
In fact, research by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization shows that investment in
agriculture is five times more effective in reducing poverty and hunger than investment in
any other sector.
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Natural disasters such as floods, tropical storms and long periods of drought are on the
increase — with calamitous consequences for the hungry poor in developing countries.
Drought is already one of the most common causes of food shortages in the world.
In 2011, peristent lack of rain caused crop failures and heavy livestock losses in parts of
Ethiopia, Somalia and Kenya. In 2012 there was a similar situation in the Sahel region of
West Africa.
In many countries, climate change is exacerbating already tough conditions. The world's
fertile farmland is under threat from erosion, salination and desertification. Meanwhile,
deforestation by human hands accelerates the erosion of land which could be used for
growing food.

Across the globe, conflicts consistently disrupt farming and food production. Fighting also
forces millions of people to flee their homes, leading to hunger emergencies as the displaced
find themselves without the means to feed themselves. The conflict in Syria is a recent
example.
In war, food sometimes becomes a weapon. Soldiers will starve opponents into submission
by seizing or destroying food and livestock and systematically wrecking local markets. Fields
are often mined and water wells contaminated, forcing farmers to abandon their land.
Ongoing conflict in Somalia and the Democratic Republic of Congo has contributed
significantly to the level of hunger in the two countries. By comparison, hunger is on the
retreat in more peaceful parts of Africa such as Ghana and Rwanda.

In recent years, the price of food products has been very unstable. Roller-coaster food prices
make it difficult for the poorest people to get nutritious food consistently – which is exactly
what they need to do. Families need access to adequate food all year round. Price spikes, on
the other hand, may temporarily put food out of reach, which can have lasting consequences
for small children.
When prices rise, consumers often shift to cheaper, less-nutritious foods, heightening the
risks of micronutrient deficiencies and other forms of malnutrition

One third of all food produced (1.3 billion tons) is never consumed. This food wastage
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represents a missed opportunity to improve global food security in a world where one in 8 is
hungry.
Producing this food also uses up precious natural resources that we need to feed the planet.
Each year, food that is produced but not eaten guzzles up a volume of water equivalent to
the annual flow of Russia's Volga River. Producing this food also adds 3.3 billion tonnes of
greenhouse gases to the atmosphere, with consequences for the climate and, ultimately, for
food production.

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