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New UN study reveals disturbing hunger trends in highland areas

english.news.cnhuaxia 2015-12-12 08:20:30

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New UN study reveals disturbing hunger trends in highland areas

  File photo: An Afghan man works at a wood shop in Bamyan province, central Afghanistan, Dec. 6, 2015. Afghans are preparing heating materials for the upcoming winter in the mountainous country. (Xinhua/Latif Azimi)

  UNITED NATIONS, Dec. 11 (Xinhua) -- While global hunger figures are decreasing, the number of food insecure people in mountain areas rose 30 percent between 2000 and 2012, according to a new study released Friday by Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the Mountain Partnership on International Mountain Day.

  "This study found that one in three mountain people, both urban and rural, in developing countries face hunger and malnutrition, compared to one out of nine people globally," deputy UN spokesman Farhan Haq said at a daily news briefing here.

  "Numbers get even starker for rural mountain populations, which depend on natural resources such as land, water and forests for their livelihoods: almost half of them are food insecure," Haq said.

  The UN General Assembly designated Dec. 11 International Mountain Day and as of 2003, it has been observed every year to create awareness about the importance of mountains to life, to highlight the opportunities and constraints in mountain development and to build alliances that will bring positive change to mountain peoples and environments around the world.

  Promoting mountain products is the theme chosen for this year's celebration of International Mountain Day. Globalization offers opportunities for mountain producers to market their high quality mountain products, such as coffee, cocoa, honey, herbs, spices and handicrafts at the national, regional and international levels.

  Though mountain agriculture cannot compete with the prices and volumes of lowland production, it can concentrate on high value, high quality products to boost local economies.

  Tourism-related services such as skiing, climbing, cultural heritage or nature trails that allow visitors to discover unique biodiversity are also some of the offerings provided by mountains and mountain communities. If sustainably managed, tourism can provide an opportunity for development in mountain regions.

  International Mountain Day 2015 provides an occasion to highlight how mountain communities are protecting biodiversity by producing a large variety of typical products and providing crucial goods and services to all of the human being.

New UN study reveals disturbing hunger trends in highland areas

  File photo: In this photograph taken on November 6, 2015, Indian Khasi tribal villagers set off to collect herbs from fields in the village of Nongtraw in the north-eastern state of Meghalaya. (AFP PHOTO)

  This year, FAO, together with Mountain Partnership, mapped the vulnerability of highland peoples to food insecurity and found that the number of food insecure people living in mountain regions in developing countries grew to nearly 329 million in 2012, up from 253 million in 2000, even though the overall population of the world's mountain peoples increased only by 16 percent.

  Mountain zones cover 22 percent of the Earth's land surface and are home to 13 percent of the human population, according to FAO.

  "The living conditions of mountain peoples have deteriorated and their vulnerability to hunger has increased. Harsh climates and the difficult, often inaccessible terrain, combined with political and social marginality certainly contribute to making mountain peoples particularly vulnerable to food shortages," said FAO Director-General Jose Graziano da Silva.

  The study showed that the growing profile of hunger is not the only challenge that mountain dwellers face, saying that 90 percent of them live in developing countries where most are dependent on subsistence agriculture, working in fragile ecosystems that are easily affected by climate change.

  Almost 59 million mountain people in Africa were identified as vulnerable to food insecurity in 2000, a number that increased 46 percent to 86 million by 2012, according to the study. The majority of vulnerable people are located in eastern Africa.

  In Latin America and the Caribbean, the total number of vulnerable mountain people increased by 22 percent from more than 39 million in 2000 to nearly 48 million in 2012.

  However, the proportion of vulnerable mountain populations remained quite stable, FAO said.

  Mountain populations of Asia are particularly prone to vulnerability, the study showed.

  Results of the study show that more than 192 million people were considered vulnerable to food insecurity in 2012, an increase of over 40 million people, or 26 percent, from 2000.

  In mountain areas, where family farming and smallholder agriculture, forestry and animal husbandry are the prevailing farming systems, investments and technical support are needed to diversify and boost mountain production systems through, for example, integrating indigenous knowledge and traditions with modern techniques.

  Promoting mountain products is the theme chosen for this year's celebration of Mountain Day, according to FAO, adding that globalization offers opportunities for mountain producers to market their high quality mountain products, such as coffee, cocoa, honey, herbs, spices and handicrafts.

  New UN study reveals disturbing hunger trends in highland areas

  English.news.cn 2015-12-12 08:20:30

New UN study reveals disturbing hunger trends in highland areas

  File photo: An Afghan man works at a wood shop in Bamyan province, central Afghanistan, Dec. 6, 2015. Afghans are preparing heating materials for the upcoming winter in the mountainous country. (Xinhua/Latif Azimi)

  UNITED NATIONS, Dec. 11 (Xinhua) -- While global hunger figures are decreasing, the number of food insecure people in mountain areas rose 30 percent between 2000 and 2012, according to a new study released Friday by Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the Mountain Partnership on International Mountain Day.

  "This study found that one in three mountain people, both urban and rural, in developing countries face hunger and malnutrition, compared to one out of nine people globally," deputy UN spokesman Farhan Haq said at a daily news briefing here.

  "Numbers get even starker for rural mountain populations, which depend on natural resources such as land, water and forests for their livelihoods: almost half of them are food insecure," Haq said.

  The UN General Assembly designated Dec. 11 International Mountain Day and as of 2003, it has been observed every year to create awareness about the importance of mountains to life, to highlight the opportunities and constraints in mountain development and to build alliances that will bring positive change to mountain peoples and environments around the world.

  Promoting mountain products is the theme chosen for this year's celebration of International Mountain Day. Globalization offers opportunities for mountain producers to market their high quality mountain products, such as coffee, cocoa, honey, herbs, spices and handicrafts at the national, regional and international levels.

  Though mountain agriculture cannot compete with the prices and volumes of lowland production, it can concentrate on high value, high quality products to boost local economies.

  Tourism-related services such as skiing, climbing, cultural heritage or nature trails that allow visitors to discover unique biodiversity are also some of the offerings provided by mountains and mountain communities. If sustainably managed, tourism can provide an opportunity for development in mountain regions.

  International Mountain Day 2015 provides an occasion to highlight how mountain communities are protecting biodiversity by producing a large variety of typical products and providing crucial goods and services to all of the human being.

New UN study reveals disturbing hunger trends in highland areas

  File photo: In this photograph taken on November 6, 2015, Indian Khasi tribal villagers set off to collect herbs from fields in the village of Nongtraw in the north-eastern state of Meghalaya. (AFP PHOTO)

  This year, FAO, together with Mountain Partnership, mapped the vulnerability of highland peoples to food insecurity and found that the number of food insecure people living in mountain regions in developing countries grew to nearly 329 million in 2012, up from 253 million in 2000, even though the overall population of the world's mountain peoples increased only by 16 percent.

  Mountain zones cover 22 percent of the Earth's land surface and are home to 13 percent of the human population, according to FAO.

  "The living conditions of mountain peoples have deteriorated and their vulnerability to hunger has increased. Harsh climates and the difficult, often inaccessible terrain, combined with political and social marginality certainly contribute to making mountain peoples particularly vulnerable to food shortages," said FAO Director-General Jose Graziano da Silva.

  The study showed that the growing profile of hunger is not the only challenge that mountain dwellers face, saying that 90 percent of them live in developing countries where most are dependent on subsistence agriculture, working in fragile ecosystems that are easily affected by climate change.

  Almost 59 million mountain people in Africa were identified as vulnerable to food insecurity in 2000, a number that increased 46 percent to 86 million by 2012, according to the study. The majority of vulnerable people are located in eastern Africa.

  In Latin America and the Caribbean, the total number of vulnerable mountain people increased by 22 percent from more than 39 million in 2000 to nearly 48 million in 2012.

  However, the proportion of vulnerable mountain populations remained quite stable, FAO said.

  Mountain populations of Asia are particularly prone to vulnerability, the study showed.

  Results of the study show that more than 192 million people were considered vulnerable to food insecurity in 2012, an increase of over 40 million people, or 26 percent, from 2000.

  In mountain areas, where family farming and smallholder agriculture, forestry and animal husbandry are the prevailing farming systems, investments and technical support are needed to diversify and boost mountain production systems through, for example, integrating indigenous knowledge and traditions with modern techniques.

  Promoting mountain products is the theme chosen for this year's celebration of Mountain Day, according to FAO, adding that globalization offers opportunities for mountain producers to market their high quality mountain products, such as coffee, cocoa, honey, herbs, spices and handicrafts.

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