Food for Peace (FFP) programs provide emergency and development food assistance to combat hunger and malnutrition worldwide. Emergency food assistance is delivered primarily to communities affected by recurrent crises such as droughts, conflict, natural disasters, and chronic food insecurity. Development food assistance complements emergency food assistance, working where communities require agricultural system strengthening, improved nutrition services, or household livelihood diversification to cope with yearly droughts or other recurrent shocks. Development programming is multisectoral and targets the highest risk communities to address the root causes of hunger and malnutrition.
What does it buy?
FFP provides emergency in-kind food donations from the U.S., locally purchased food, food vouchers, and cash transfers to communities in need. It also invests in nutrition, water and sanitation services, agricultural productivity, and household income diversification.
Why is it important?
FFP programs help tens of millions of hungry people—in F.Y. 2019, FFP operated in 55 countries, reaching tens of millions of people, including through non-emergency programming in 12 countries.
Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, hunger was on the rise. Nearly 690 million people went hungry in 2019. In all regions of the world except Northern America and Europe, the prevalence of severe food insecurity has increased from 2014 to 2019.
The Famine Early Warning System forecasted that in the first half of 2021, 90 million people would need emergency food assistance across 29 monitored countries, including in South Sudan, Yemen, Nigeria, Somalia, and parts of Ethiopia.
After Hurricane Dorian struck the Bahamas in September 2019, FFP provided $1 million for emergency food assistance, supporting approximately 39,000 people for three months.
Every year, Food for Peace programs help tens of millions of hungry people in over 50 countries.
Why should Americans care?
American farmers support FFP, which uses a competitive process to purchase commodities from U.S. farmers and uses the food for in-kind donations, predominately in humanitarian settings.
Alleviating global hunger is critical to U.S. national security. Where hunger endures, instability grows. By supporting the world’s most vulnerable, FFP builds a more stable world and works to ensure that people have the opportunity to lead healthy, productive lives.
The COVID-19 crisis is severely impacting global food security. The World Food Programme projects that the number of people facing food crises could increase by 82%, to 270 million, by the end of 2020 due to COVID-19’s impacts.
Recent projections have shown that as a result of the pandemic, we can expect an additional 9.3 million children to suffer from wasting (acute malnutrition) in 2020. To combat projected increases in wasting, United Nations’ hunger-fighting agencies recently proposed a $2.4 billion package of life-saving interventions. These high-impact interventions could not only save children today but continue to reduce cases of malnutrition for years to come.
What more could be done?
Over recent years food security has gravely deteriorated due to increased conflict, displacement, and poverty, while food production and the availability and affordability of nutritious foods have been threatened by changes in weather and climate. COVID-19 has exacerbated these challenges. Currently, an estimated 235 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance and over 270 million people are food insecure. With additional investment, Food for Peace could expand its reach and support more communities and families.
Funding levels may not accurately reflect those in the appropriations bills and/or reports due to rounding.