October 30, 2020 | By Denise Cheung , Dilip Wagle

Featured Commentary - Hunger in Washington state: US food insecurity on the rise nationwide

Demand for food is expected to grow 60 percent by 2050. According to the chief economist at the World Food Program, as many as 135 million people worldwide are already facing severe food shortages, but COVID-19 is forecasted to double that number by the end of the year.

Though the spectre of world-wide food insecurity looms dangerously on the horizon, the scope and gravity of this problem is particularly acute in parts of the U.S. In the state of Washington, nearly 1 in 3 individuals could face some sort of food insecurity in the coming year with people of color affected disproportionately.

Despite years of economic progress, the pandemic is on track to precipitate a potentially devastating increase in the number of Washington state residents who lack reliable and consistent access to sources of affordable, nutritious food.

A recent study conducted by McKinsey & Company on behalf of Northwest Harvest suggests that the food insecure population will quadruple in Washington State as a result of the crisis.

>>>Read the full article on Agri-Pulse. 


The Global Food and Agriculture Program aims to inform the development of US policy on global agricultural development and food security by raising awareness and providing resources, information, and policy analysis to the US Administration, Congress, and interested experts and organizations.

The Global Food and Agriculture Program is housed within the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, an independent, nonpartisan organization that provides insight – and influences the public discourse – on critical global issues. The Council on Global Affairs convenes leading global voices and conducts independent research to bring clarity and offer solutions to challenges and opportunities across the globe. The Council is committed to engaging the public and raising global awareness of issues that transcend borders and transform how people, business, and governments engage the world.

Support for the Global Food and Agriculture Program is generously provided by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.


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| By Roger Thurow

Our New Gordian Knot

Fifty years ago Dr. Norman Borlaug recieved the Nobel Peace Prize for cutting the "Goridan knot" of population and food production. Now the planet faces another seemingly intractable problem: how to nourish the planet while preserving the planet.