World Food Program Director David Beasley speakting at a conference.
WFP Director David Beasley was able to announce some good news as well. Despite widespread fears, the USA had not reduced its budget for the World Food Programme.
Photo: Kerstin Müller


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How can nine billion people be fed in 2050 without destroying the planet? And how can new technologies help achieve this both on the producer and the consumer side? These issues were at the centre of the third World Food Convention, organised by the daily “Tagesspiegel” in Berlin/Germany early in May 2019.

Just like any other serious relief organisation, the World Food Programme (WFP) seeks to become superfluous one day, although achieving this appears to be slipping further into the future again at the moment. Over the last two years, the number of people suffering hunger has once again started to rise, reaching a present 815 million people, around 124 million of whom are on the brink of starvation, as WFP Director David Beasley cautioned in Berlin early in May, the chief reason being man-made conflict. “Today, 80 per cent of WFP expenditure goes into in conflict areas. Money that is lacking in true development, money that is wasted because of war,” Beasley noted. At the World Food Convention (WFC), organised by the Berliner daily “Tagesspiegel” for the third time, he discussed options to feed the growing world population sustainably with numerous representatives from politics, business, science and civil society. In addition to the question of what had caused the current developments, the debate above all focused on the opportunities offered by data-driven solutions for sustainable agriculture and how food losses and food waste should be handled.

Open conflicts and hidden wars

Beasley reminded the meeting that people in conflict areas often had no choice but to leave their home, and stressed the fact that a one per cent increase in hunger led to a two per cent increase in migration.

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