World Hunger Day is an international observance on October 16. It was introduced in 1991 by the United Nations General Assembly to mobilize global awareness about hunger and poverty amid economic development.
The most common themes of World Hunger Day are reducing food wastage, providing access to agricultural resources, improving agriculture practices, donating money or time for humanitarian efforts, and creating public awareness campaigns.
What is World Hunger Day
The United Nations General Assembly created World Hunger Day to raise awareness about world hunger and poverty.
It is a global initiative that aims to inspire people worldwide to fight against world hunger together as one community. SINCE ITS INCEPTION, the UN has hosted numerous events on World Food Day, including symposiums centered on sustainable development goals for food security, integration of small-scale farmers into local economies, and improving agricultural practices at home or abroad.
October 16 every year marks the annual celebration of world hunger awareness with various rallies across many countries like Germany. You can hold up posters saying “enough!” in front of supermarkets before they throw out unsold produce because it is past the sell date. Similar protests have been held in front of government buildings and world landmarks like the Eiffel Tower.
World hunger day has also sparked many awareness campaigns, including Food Day. You can participate by engaging with social media to spread world hunger information or participate in food-related activities such as planting vegetables at home. There’s even an app called “I’m Hungry! It takes just one minute” that gives users 60 seconds to donate money via SMS after opening it up.
Every year hundreds of events are held on world hunger day across the globe, from bake sales and benefits for local charity organizations to international symposiums discussing human rights issues surrounding poverty and world hunger. By getting involved with this global movement, we put ourselves closer to world hunger eradication.
42 Facts about World Hunger
1. World Hunger Day is an international observance day on October 16
2. The day was established in 1979 by the UN to highlight the issue of world hunger and its consequences
3. There are over 795 million people in the world who don’t have enough food to lead a healthy, active life
4. The number had risen steadily since 1990 when it was at 623 million people, or just under one-third of today’s population
5. In developing countries, the vast majority of those who suffer from hunger are women and children
6. A lack of food also affects economic growth in many countries
7. People without enough to eat often have less access to education, which can lead to fewer opportunities over time
8. And because a hungry person is often more susceptible to disease, it can become a vicious cycle
9. One in eight people around the world face hunger every day
10. And one in three children are stunted from lack of food before the age of five
11. It is estimated that 36 million people died because of hunger and malnutrition in 2011 – which equates to roughly 2,000 deaths a day
12. That’s more than AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis combined
13. World hunger is decreasing overall, but progress isn’t even across the board
14. In Sub-Saharan Africa, for example, the number of hungry people rose from 195 million in 1990 to 237 million in 2012
15. In 2012 alone, an estimated 18 million people became newly malnourished around the world
16. The vast majority of malnourished children live in developing countries — particularly in Southeast Asia and sub-Saharan Africa
17. So why does hunger exist? While food insecurity can be caused by climate change or conflict, it usually boils down to poverty
18. Some 842 million people don’t have enough to eat because they live in countries where it’s too expensive
19. Many of them live on less than $1.25 a day – which means that even small increases in food prices can push them into hunger
20. In fact, the United Nations estimates that around 75% of the world hungry are living in “bio-geographic” disaster zones known as “fragile states,” which suffer from conflict or poor governance
21. The vast majority of those who go hungry — 9 out of 10 — live in developing or middle-income countries
22. The final one percent lives in the industrialized world and most often is made up of homeless people
23. World hunger is caused by more than just scarcity though
24. In some cases, food supplies are abundant, but the people don’t have enough money to buy it
25. UN experts estimate around one billion people suffer from “hidden” hunger – a lack of vitamins and minerals such as iodine or zinc
26. That’s because malnutrition doesn’t mean only an empty stomach – it can also mean missing out on critical nutrients that humans need to remain healthy
27. Taking steps to overcome hunger could help solve other problems, too — including climate change
28. Agriculture produces around 25% of all greenhouse gas emissions worldwide – and livestock accounts for almost half of that number on its own
29. By 2050, food production is expected to increase by 70% to feed a growing population
30. With projected temperatures rising above 2 degrees Celsius, experts say it will be difficult for farmers in some areas to keep up with what will be needed
31. By reducing the number of hungry people around the world, cutting emissions tied to agriculture would become easier
32. Hunger reduction efforts such as eliminating waste and encouraging sustainable practices can also help communities adapt better to climate change
33. In short – ending hunger has benefits that reach far beyond saving lives or improving health
34. World Food Day was established in 1979 by FAO’s governing body Conference at its first session after the World Food Conference held in Rome between November 13th and 17th, 1974
35. The day promotes awareness about hunger and food insecurity and raises political support for the cause
36. The first World Food Day was observed on October 16, 1979
37. FAO also celebrated World Food Week from today until October 19 every year to mark the anniversary of these celebrations in 1981
38. Since its founding in 1945, FAO has made significant progress fighting global hunger – but more challenges remain
39. In 1996, 194 countries signed a pledge called the “Millennium Declaration,” which committed them to halve the number of hungry people by 2015 compared to 1990 levels
40. While some may argue that goal was too ambitious, FAO says it did make a difference – leading to a nearly 20% decrease in the number of hungry people around the world
41. Still, about 795 million people go hungry every day, according to FAO’s latest estimates
42. Even if progress has been made, that means one person still goes without food every second
This international day of action asks people around the world to take a stand against hunger. You can make a difference by taking part in one of the many events that will be taking place worldwide and by sharing your recipes with friends on social media using #worldhungerday. Whether you’re cooking for family, hosting a party, or dinner out with friends, there are lots of easy ways to get involved this World Hunger Day.
How to Help on World Hunger Day
Get the kids involved in cooking! Make it a team effort. Talk about why we are taking action against hunger and make a list of ingredients to make delicious meals for people facing hunger. For example, instead of throwing out banana peels, onions that are past their best, or the last few cucumbers from your vegetable box, become a fantastic chef!
You’ll be surprised how many culinary treats can be made with leftovers. Extend leftovers every day by making them into something completely different.
If you’re others at home but want to do something to help, share recipes with friends and family members. Come up with a dish that enables you to give back and invite friends to share it with them. Please take photos of your dishes and post them on social media using #worldhungerday.
Using Wish Upon A Page’s free online publishing tools, you can also create your own #worldhungerday social media page in minutes.
Get creative with ingredients and go for easy recipes that don’t require too many pots or pans. If you’re hosting a dinner party or a bigger group, try out the recipe below for pasta salad.
This dish is not only delicious and simple to make, but it’s healthy too! It’s packed full of veggies and whole-grain pasta, which offers 3 grams of fiber per serving – half the recommended daily intake for adults. This nutritious meal will help fight hunger while pleasing even the pickiest of eaters.
And remember: World Hunger Day is about more than just taking action against world hunger. It’s a day of sharing ideas and stories, making plans, and dreaming big. Come together with people worldwide to take action that will end poverty and hunger once and for all!