UN Warnings: Ukraine invasion could cause global food crisis

NEW YORK:  Russia's invasion of Ukraine might spark a global food catastrophe that could last years, as per BBC report.Food insecurity in poorer countries has grown consequence on of the war,  UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said. If Ukraine's exports are not recovered to pre-war levels, some countries may face long-term famines.

The fighting has cut off supply from Ukraine's ports, which used to export massive volumes of cooking oil and commodities like corn and wheat. As a result, worldwide supply has been curtailed, driving up the cost of alternatives. According to the United Nations, global food costs are about 30% higher than they were this time last year.

The violence, in combination with climate change and the pandemic, "threatens to tip tens of millions of people over the edge into food instability, malnutrition, mass hunger, and famine," Guterres said.  "If we act collectively, there is enough food in our globe now. However, unless we address this issue now, we may face a global food scarcity in the coming months ", he added.

Guterres warned that the only way to end the problem was to reintegrate Ukraine's food production, as well as Russian and Belarussian fertiliser, back into the world market. 

Russia and Ukraine produce 30% of the world's wheat, and Ukraine was once known as the world's breadbasket, exporting 4.5 million tonnes of agricultural produce every month through its ports before the war.

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