Julio Berdegué, regional representative for the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) called the overall situation “危急,” adding that the pandemic had dramatically intensified existing food insecurity.
The UN report calculates that 59.7 million people in the region are now suffering from hunger — the highest level since 2000.
Regionally, Central American countries are faring the worst.
In Guatemala, around half of the population is experiencing food insecurity. And in El Salvador and Honduras, those figures are nearly as stark, 与周围 47% 和 46% of their populations going hungry, 分别.
These three countries
, collectively known as the Northern Triangle
, are the jumping off points for migrant caravans making their way to the United States
’ southern border in search of a better life
In South America
, Argentina experienced the most drastic increase in food insecurity over the last few years
, 报告说, with more than a third of the population experiencing limited access to food
— the result of a prolonged economic slump that brought back the specter of hyperinflation
与此同时, another form of malnutrition is plaguing the region: Obesity.
一些 106 百万人 — or one in every four adults — are overweight, with childhood obesity continuing to rise, 根据报告.
“With services disrupted and livelihoods devastated, families are finding it harder to put healthy food on the table, leaving many children hungry and others overweight,” said Jean Gough, UNICEF Regional Director for Latin America and the Caribbean.
“For children to grow up healthy, we need to ensure all families access affordable, nutritious food.”