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Jakarta Post

FAO calls for urgent action to fight hunger, malnutrition in Indonesia

  • News Desk

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Fri, October 19, 2018   /   07:03 pm
FAO calls for urgent action to fight hunger, malnutrition in Indonesia A student hangs her entry for the international poster contest during the opening of the Road to Zero Hunger Festival in Menteng Park, Central Jakarta, on Sunday to commemorate World Food Day, which falls on Oct. 16. (Courtesy FAO Indonesia /-)

The United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has called for action to reduce world hunger.  

The FAO recorded that the absolute number of people in the world affected by undernourishment, or chronic food deprivation, is now estimated to have increased from around 804 million in 2016 to nearly 821 million in 2017, 11 percent of the world population, or one in nine people on the planet.

Other forms of malnutrition have also increased. In 2017, at least 1.5 billion people suffered from “hidden hunger” in which the food they eat does not have adequate vitamins and minerals essential for growth and development.

“The problem of malnutrition, in particular undernutrition, still remains in many parts of the region. In Indonesia, the office vice president confirmed only last week that a total of more than one third of children under 5 years of age are stunted, which is high for a country of its economic status,” said FAO representative Stephen Rudgard in his speech during the commemoration of 2018 World Food Day in Jejangkit district in Banjarmasin, South Kalimantan.

In the State of Food Insecurity 2018 report published by the United Nations, Indonesia shows a high prevalence in all three forms of child malnutrition, which are stunting, wasting and obesity. 

The FAO said the statistics indicated inadequate access to diverse and nutritious foods.

“To transform our vision of a world free of hunger and malnutrition into reality, we all need to work together.  That requires not only the leadership shown by the government, but everybody has to contribute,” Rudgard said.