Global commodity inflation, aggravated by the war in Ukraine, threatens to leave 14 million people in Latin America food insecure, almost 50% more than the current figure, the United Nations World Food Program (WFP) warned yesterday at a press conference.
There are currently 9.7 million people in this situation of food insecurity in the 13 countries of the region where the WFP works, which is trying to alleviate food shortages with imports from regional producers such as Mexico or Argentina, said the organization’s director for the region, Lola Castro.
Castro gave an example of the problems of importing food in Cuba, the Dominican Republic, or Haiti, the latter country where food inflation has reached 26 percent.
“The region had suffered multiple crises due to climate change and the pandemic that put 17.7 million people in a situation of food insecurity; by the end of 2021, the figure had dropped to 8.3 million.
He also explained that although Russia and Ukraine do not export large quantities of grains and other foodstuffs to the region, the generalized rise in food prices across the global market has severely affected many countries in the area that, in some cases, are net importers of these basic goods.
He stated that “we are already seeing the consequences” of the food crisis with an increase in migratory flows from the south to the north of the continent, including such dangerous routes as the Darien Pass that separates South America from Panama.
“That route was crossed by 5,000 people in 2020, but in 2021 the number increased to 151,000. A roadless route where people have to walk 10 days through the jungle, where many people die and which is one of the most dangerous in the world,” he stressed.
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Source: Dominican Today.