The number of hungry people in the world was estimated at 842 million in 2011-13 by the Global Hunger Index (GHI) report released on Monday, even as world cereal production was estimated at a near record level of 2,489 million metric tons a few days ago. About a quarter of the world’s hungry, or 210 million, are in India alone.
The number of hungry people appears to have declined slightly from the 870 million estimated in 2010-12, but the current GHI report says that this is due to a recalculation of how undernourishment is measured by the UN-linked Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). Since 2006, the absolute number of undernourished people has remained unchanged but their proportion to total world population is declining because the world population is growing.
The 2013 GHI is calculated for 120 countries for which data on its three component indicators are available and where measuring hunger is considered most relevant. The three indicators used are: the proportion of people who are undernourished, the proportion of children under five who are underweight, and the mortality (death) rate of children younger than age five. The report has been brought out by the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), and two international charities Welthungerhilfe and Concern Worldwide.
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