Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Qatar are the only Arab countries in the top quartile of ‘Access to Food’ ranking, according to the Global Food Security Q2 2022 report released today by Deep Knowledge Analytics.
The global food system has been destabilized by the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Levels of hunger and acute food insecurity in sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, Latin American and South Asia are expected to increase further by the end of this year.
The report assesses the drivers of food insecurity in 2022. Among the key findings, high income countries of North America and the EU lead the Food Security Index as the most food-secure nations in the world. The United States tops the ranking with 7.9 points out of 10. The report concluded that developed, food-secure countries will not face hunger, but the deficit of certain food products and high inflation will be felt.
Sub-Saharan and MENA region countries dominate the bottom quartile of the Food Security Index, with Somalia scoring the lowest at 2.97 points out of 10. These countries have not demonstrated the capacity to build food security through national policies and are affected by conflicts (northern Nigeria, Yemen, Burkina Faso and Niger), by weather conditions such as consecutive seasons of drought (Kenya, South Sudan and Somalia) and by economic shocks.
Commenting on the findings, Alex Cresniov, Director of Deep Knowledge Analytics said: “The role of technology in achieving global food security is more important than ever. AI and real-time monitoring will be helpful to tackle food security issues by enabling companies to develop food management solutions to optimize manufacturing processes and supply chain operations.”
As a response to the decrease in global supply, a number of export restrictions are being imposed to protect national interests. Several food-secure countries have announced and implemented national strategies specifically aimed at tackling food insecurity in 2022, but that does not apply to the majority of countries in the developing world. Such government-led endeavors focus mainly on implementing resilient agricultural practices, strengthening local production and ensuring access to safe and nutritious food all year round.
“Devising a food security strategy to counter issues of domestic food insecurity must be considered by governments across the world, especially during such times of uncertainty,” Alex added.
Looking ahead, governments need to weigh up main factors shaping food security such as food access, affordability, production, and presence of crisis situations globally.
The next iterations of the Global Food Security report series will add new sub-measures, addressing the impact of wheat distribution on food security and the nutritional profiles of countries, and forecasting possible food insecurity scenarios.
The events of the past decade as well as the key developments since the beginning of 2022 have demonstrated the importance of examining hunger from both the food system, as well as external shocks perspectives. Offering a dynamic quantitative and qualitative benchmarking model, the Global Food Security Q2 2022 report was developed to assess the issues of food access, crisis risks, and economic resilience across 171 countries.
The report also identifies countries at risk of humanitarian emergencies, which could overwhelm their current national response capacity, and therefore lead to a need for international assistance.