Children eating in Aweil, South Sudan, 2018. The lean season has left many families with little food and mothers are scrambling to survive.
Photo: ©FAO/Stefanie Glinski


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The number of hungry people in Africa rose again between 2015 and 2017. 20 per cent of the African population was undernourished in the year 2017, most of them living in sub-Saharan Africa.

Hunger in Africa continues to rise, one in every five people is hungry in Africa, according to a joint UN report published in February 2019. This threatens the continent's hunger eradication efforts to meet the Malabo Goals 2025 and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, particularly Sustainable Development Goal 2 (SDG2, Zero Hunger).

More people continue to suffer from undernourishment in Africa than in any other region - evidence suggests that in 2017, 20 per cent of the African population was undernourished. Of the 257 million hungry people in Africa, 237 million are in sub-Saharan Africa and 20 million in Northern Africa. 

The annual UN report indicates that compared to 2015, there were an additional 34.5 million more undernourished people in Africa, 32.6 million of whom lived in sub-Saharan Africa and 1.9 million in Northern Africa. Nearly half of the increase is due to the rise in the number of undernourished people in Western Africa, while another third is from Eastern Africa.

In many countries, notably in Eastern and Southern Africa, adverse climatic conditions due to El Niño led to a decline in agricultural production and soaring staple food prices.

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