Cry out famine in the midst pandemic

Crier famine en pleine pandémie

A crisis in the cache always one, two, three others. The warning was given this week : the pandemic of sars coronavirus mask a potential famine ” in proportion biblical “. In other words, millions of humans will die of hunger and we will be notified.

We excavate for the encouraging news, but continue to be overwhelmed by the revelations disturbing, and the statements outlandish. Some are shocking like the ravings of Donald Trump about the use of disinfectant to get rid of the coronavirus.

Other, more disturbing as the fact appalling that the Covid-19 ravage first and foremost homes for the elderly : a death out of two in Europe, nine out of ten from us.

The famine announced by the experts of the UN found itself in a flash on our radar this week before being quickly overshadowed by another statistic maddening. However, it will be liquidated one day that bastard of a virus, but populations have been decimated by the hungry will take generations to recover from.


The pandemic exacerbates a tragedy are already apparent. The novel coronavirus had not yet done so of victims that already, the end of 2019, a UN report warned that ” more than 135 million people in 55 countries and territories were facing a food security situation of grave and acute “.

The virus, like the proverbial grain of sand in the mechanics, came up to block what was already working described caha. The closure of borders, disruption of supply chains, and the sudden paralysis of world trade intensifies the difficulties of fragile countries to the point where, according to the WFP, the united Nations agency that fights against hunger, the number of people threatened by famine will double if nothing is done.

The impact in the fifty countries already referred to, is shocking : in the absence of a sufficient supply of power, 75 million children are stunted and 17 million of them suffer from emaciation… they did more than skin and bones.


Nothing comparable and yet, the” anxiety diet ” – as officials describe it modestly, is invited into the daily life of thousands of Americans. Every day, calls for help are thrown to the four corners of the country. In Atlantic City, New Jersey in the 1500 workers of casinos without income or social safety net were expected Wednesday, the long interminable queues for a few boxes of fruit, vegetables and milk.

In Utah, southwest of Salt Lake City, 5,000 families have been waiting hours for the grocery bags that they no longer have the means to pay for it. And in San Antonio, Texas, a never-before-seen : 10 000 households fed in a single day by the local food bank. In short, no doubt, if the shortages affect the people here, they are harassing the people there.

Keep an open mind, but if the temptation is strong to think only of ourselves. Conflicts, climate change and forced migration has not dimmed because of the virus, on the contrary ! No need to let it amplify the drama.

Famine in the world


  • 2019 : 135 million in 55 countries
  • 2018 : 113 million in 53 countries
  • 2017 : 124 million in 51 countries
  • 2016 : $ 108 million in 48 countries
  • 2020 (projections) : 265 million

World Population : 7 632,8

Undernourished people : 821,6

The worst food crises, 2019

1. Yemen

  • 15.9 million people suffering from hunger
  • 53 % of the population

2. Congo (Parti. dem.)

  • 15.6 million people suffering from hunger
  • 26% of the population

3. Afghanistan

  • 11.3 million people suffering from hunger
  • 37 % of the population

4. Venezuela

  • 9.3 million people suffering from hunger
  • 32% of the population

5. South Sudan

  • 7 million people suffering from hunger
  • 61 % of the population

Distribution of under-nutrition in the world (in million) in 2018*

  • Asia : 513,9
  • Africa : 256,1
  • Latin america and the Caribbean : 42,5
  • Other : 6,5
  • Oceania, North America and Europe : 2,6

Notes : *Values from projections. (Source : FAO)

(Source : Food Security Information Network global Report on food crises, 2020)

Share Button