Millions still going hungry

India wants to stop $14 billion annual food waste

According to the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), some 194 million Indians are still going hungry daily, despite India wasting food worth about $14 billion a year.

India, one of the world’s largest food producers, is trying to tackle waste during production, processing, retailing and consumption by funding internal initiatives and by partnerships on best practice and technology with overseas investors. But many find that progress is too slow in India, which ranked 100 among 119 countries in the 2017 Global Hunger Index, with 14.5 percent of the population undernourished.

The paradox of millions going hungry in India while food goes to waste is receiving increasing amounts of attention as the FAO stresses that one third of food produced globally for human consumption is wasted every year. As the World Economic Forum has highlighted, food production is clearly not the main issue: India needs 225-230 million tonnes of food per year to feed its population, farm output in 2015-2016 hit more than 270 million tonnes.

A former agriculture minister, once told parliament that nearly 40 percent of the value of annual production was wasted, with crops left to rot in the sun without storage or transportation, or eaten by insects and rats. reports that the Indian government, however, has said it is trying to stop food losses and address hunger in various ways, including changing distribution strategies and using technology.

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