As the prices of food and energy are still soaring to new heights, many countries are confronted with major social and political crises. Food riots and protests threatened Governments as well as social stability in Africa, Asia, the Middle East and Latin America and the Caribbean. Massive public protests in response to higher food prices erupted in very diverse areas of different countries.
The number of people in need of emergency food aid in low-income food-deficit countries also increased. In the Horn of Africa, the serious food insecurity situation is expected to continue in 2011 in the face of persisting rainfall deficits, high prices for staple foods at local markets, poor livestock production and lower agricultural wages.
Almost everybody’s standard of living has been reduced as people in the middle class become increasingly careful about their food purchases, the near poor descend into poverty and those already poor suffer even greater deprivations than before. With the increase in hunger and malnutrition, the risk of premature deaths is likely to increase among the young, old, infirm and other vulnerable people and this will continue unless conditions improve.