Among the greatest challenges the world faces today are how to ensure that our growing global population ‒ projected to rise to around 10 billion by 2050 ‒ has access to enough healthy food and how we can reduce food loss and waste for a more sustainable planet, as detailed in Kellogg Company’s 2019-2020 Corporate Responsibility Report. Given the COVID-19 pandemic, this need is more urgent than ever.
Hunger and Poverty Amid COVID-19
In April, World Food Programme Executive Director David Beasley informed the United Nations Security Council that, “due to COVID-19, an additional 130 million people could be pushed to the brink of starvation by the end of 2020.”
Research from the United Nations University is suggesting that “the economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic threatens to create a ‘new era’ of poverty, putting decades of progress at risk.” COVID-19 also threatens achievement of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals, specifically End Poverty and Zero Hunger.
For example, in India, a survey of workers conducted 21 days into that country’s lockdown revealed that 50% had food rations left for less than one day and 70 percent had less than half their daily wages remaining. With little food and even less money, these workers are turning to food banks in record numbers. The Global FoodBanking Network (GFN) is hearing similar devastating stories from around the world.
A nonprofit with a mission to nourish the world’s hungry through uniting and advancing food banks, GFN was established to advance one of the most promising, community-based solutions to hunger: food banking. The food bank model is a revolutionary hunger-relief solution that serves as a nexus between sectors to address food insecurity while also reducing food loss and waste at the community level.
Currently, we are supporting food banks in 45 countries on the front lines of COVID-19. From Brazil to Botswana, food banks around the globe are seeing unprecedented demand – the likes of which will not ease anytime soon. While COVID-19 is a health and economic crisis everywhere, the virus poses a significant threat to countries already dealing with issues of food insecurity.
Even before COVID-19, two billion people suffered from moderate or severe food insecurity, meaning they are hungry or at risk of hunger, and are therefore forced to compromise the quality and quantity of their diets or miss meals entirely. Yet, there is more than enough food currently produced in the world to feed everyone, if we can just capture the one-third of all food produced globally that is lost or wasted.
A Transformative Partnership
As a founding partner of GFN, Kellogg has long understood the benefits of partnering with food banks to help feed people in need and reduce food waste. Today, our collaboration is more important than ever because the face of hunger is rapidly changing.
In 2020, Kellogg and its charitable funds have donated more than $13 million in cash and food to global COVID-19 hunger relief. In addition to aiding GFN’s work around the world, they are supporting the European Food Banks Federation’s 24 national and local member food banks, Feeding America’s network of 200 food banks and 60,000 food pantries, and Food Banks Canada. GFN is proud to partner with Kellogg to make a positive difference in people’s lives – and we are profoundly grateful to Kellogg for its immense support over the years. Together, we are keeping food bank warehouses stocked and providing food assistance to the people that need it most, even during the most challenging environment in a century.
You can learn more about Kellogg Company’s efforts to address the impact of COVID-19 and create Better Days for 3 billion people by the end of 2030 in its 2019-2020 Corporate Responsibility Report.
For more information on The Global FoodBanking Network, please visit www.foodbanking.org.