The number of hungry people in the world has dropped to 795 million -- 216 million fewer than in 1990-92 -- or around one person out of every nine, according to the latest edition of the annual United Nation’s hunger report
In the developing regions, the prevalence of undernourishment – which measures the proportion of people who are unable to consume enough food for an active and healthy life -- has declined to 12.9 percent of the population, down from 23.3 percent a quarter of a century ago.
A majority - 72 out of 129 – of the countries monitored by UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) have achieved the Millennium Development Goal target of halving the prevalence of undernourishment by 2015, with developing regions as a whole missing the target by a small margin.
In addition, 29 countries have met the more ambitious goal laid out at the World Food Summit in 1996, when governments committed to halving the absolute number of undernourished people by 2015.
“The near-achievement of the hunger targets shows us that we can indeed eliminate the scourge of hunger in our lifetime,” said FAO director general José Graziano da Silva.
“We must be the Zero Hunger generation.
“That goal should be mainstreamed into all policy interventions and at the heart of the new sustainable development agenda to be established this year," he said.
"If we truly wish to create a world free from poverty and hunger, then we must make it a priority to invest in the rural areas of developing countries where most of the world's poorest and hungriest people live," said Kanayo F. Nwanze, president of the International Fund for Agricultural Development.
"We must work to create a transformation in our rural communities so they provide decent jobs, decent conditions and decent opportunities.
“We must invest in rural areas so that our nations can have balanced growth and so that the three billion people who live in rural areas can fulfill their potential.”
The World Food Programme also issued an urgent call today for food for hungry people in South Sudan.