World Food Day 2020 is not only about celebrating the amazing food that we have the privilege of indulging in, but it is about raising awareness for people who do not have such privilege. There are people all over the world who are suffering from hunger. Starvation is a massive problem in a number of countries, and we need to do more to raise awareness and combat this problem. It seems crazy that we live in a world whereby a large portion of the population can indulge in any sort of food they wish without a second thought while others struggle to put food on the table.
We can also use World Food Day to raise awareness about healthy diets and what our bodies need. In recent times, education has grown about healthy diets and what foods are good and bad for our bodies, but we are not there yet! This day gives us a great opportunity to further education and awareness in this area.
World Food Day 2020: History
It was first launched in 1945. The reason World Food Day was created was to celebrate the launch of the United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organisation.
The main principle which World Food Day celebrates is the furtherance of food security all over the world, especially in times of crisis. The launch of the Food and Agriculture Organisation by the UN has played a huge role in taking this worthy goal forward. Its annual celebration serves as a marker of the importance of this organisation and helps to raise awareness of the crucial need for successful agriculture policies to be implemented by governments across the world to ensure there is ample food available for everyone.
World Food Day 2020: Facts
Over 2 billion people do not have regular access to safe, nutritious and sufficient food. The global population is expected to reach almost 10 billion by 2050.
Nearly 690 million people are hungry, up 10 million since 2019. The COVID-19 pandemic could add between 83-132 million people to this number, depending on the economic growth scenario.
The impact of malnutrition in all its forms – undernutrition, micronutrient deficiencies, as well as overweight and obesity – on the global economy is estimated at USD 3.5 trillion per year.
A steady increase in hunger since 2014 together with rising obesity, clearly indicates the need to accelerate and scale up actions to strengthen food systems and protect people’s livelihoods.
Today only nine plant species account for 66% of total crop production, despite the fact that there are at least 30 000 edible plants. We need to grow a variety of food to nourish people and sustain the planet.
Approximately 14% of food produced for human consumption is lost each year between the stages where it is grown or raised up to when it reaches the wholesale market. More food is wasted at the retail food and consumer stages.
Over 3 billion people in the world lack access to internet and most of them live in rural and remote areas. Smallholder farmers need greater access to finance, training, innovation and technology to improve their livelihoods.
How to Celebrate
One of the best ways to celebrate World Food Day 2020 is by giving food to people who need it the most. If you do a quick search online, you should be able to find the nearest food bank to you. Most food banks are going to accept food or money. The sort of food that is in a typical food parcel includes biscuits, tinned fruit, tea, coffee, tinned vegetables, tinned meat, beans, pasta sauce, rice, pasta, soup, and cereal. You could also volunteer your time, food banks are often looking for willing volunteers. No matter how much time you have to spare, I’m sure that it will be appreciated.