The hunger virus multiplies: deadly recipe of conflict, Covid-19 and climate accelerate world hunger

Publication date: 9 July 2021
Author: Oxfam

A year and a half since the Covid-19 pandemic began, deaths from hunger are outpacing the virus. Ongoing conflict, combined with the economic disruptions of the pandemic and an escalating climate crisis, has deepened poverty and catastrophic food insecurity in the world’s hunger hotspots and established strongholds in new epicentres of hunger.

The worst is still yet to come unless governments urgently tackle food insecurity and its root causes head on. Today, 11 people are likely dying every minute from acute hunger linked to three lethal Cs: conflict, Covid-19, and the climate crisis.  This rate outpaces the current pandemic mortality rate, which is at 7 people per minute.  

Governments must focus on funding urgent hunger response and social protection programs to save lives now, rather than striking arms deals that perpetuate conflict, war and hunger. As equally important as stopping Covid-19 itself, is stopping it from killing more people through hunger. We need action to create fairer, more resilient and sustainable ways of feeding the world.