War would leave 19 million chronically hungry: FAO

Reduced exports of wheat and other food products from Ukraine and Russia risk leaving an additional 11 million to 19 million people chronically hungry over the next year, the UN Food Organization warned over the weekend. and Agriculture (FAO).

The conflict in Ukraine has worsened a global food crisis, with rising prices for grains, cooking oils, fuels and fertilizers.

The two countries account for nearly a third of global wheat supplies, with Russia a key fertilizer exporter and Ukraine a major supplier of corn and sunflower oil.

Boubaker BenBelhassen, director of the FAO Markets and Trade Division, mentioned that the impact of the conflict “may lead between 11 and 19 million people to famine or chronic hunger by 2022 and 2023.”

This preliminary estimate was based on the reduction in Ukraine’s and Russia’s food exports after the war, he told reporters.

The FAO also noted in a report last week that rising costs of agricultural inputs such as fertilizers may deter farmers from expanding output and worsen food security in poorer countries facing record import bills. .

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