Blog Post

More than 205 Million People Facing Acute Food Insecurity: GRFC Mid Year Update Released

For the fourth consecutive year, global acute food insecurity rose in 2022. As many as 205.1 million people across 45 countries and territories are in IPC Phase 3 (Crisis) or higher food insecurity as of September 2022, according to the Global Report on Food Crisis Mid-Year Update. That represents an increase of 29.5 million people from 2021.

As many as 38.6 million people across 34 countries are in Phase 4 (Emergency) food insecurity, while 236.5 million people are in Phase 2 (Stressed) food insecurity. It is important to note that these numbers, while significantly higher than the previous year, cover fewer countries than the 2021 GRFC (41 compared to 45). In other words, it is likely that the real level of acute food insecurity around the world is even higher than reported.

The Democratic Republic of the Congo, Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Nigeria, and Yemen accounted for over half of the global population in Phase 3 or worse food insecurity as of September 2022. In addition, close to 500,000 people are expected to reach Phase 5 (Famine) level food insecurity by the end of 2022; the majority of those are in Somalia, with smaller populations located in Yemen, South Sudan, and Afghanistan.

The report highlights several types of shock that have converged at the global, regional, national, and household levels to drive acute food insecurity to these alarming levels. These include protracted conflict, extreme weather events, ongoing economic crises, rising global and domestic food prices, and continued impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and the conflict in Ukraine.

As in previous years, Africa remains the hardest hit with rising hunger levels. The Horn of Africa has suffered a multi-season drought in recent years that, combined with ongoing conflict in some areas and economic shocks, has driven almost 32 million people into acute food insecurity. Meanwhile, West Africa and the Sahel region experienced a 41-percent increase in IPC Phase 3 or worse food insecurity from 2021. Areas of Central and Southern Africa have also experienced double-digit increases in hunger levels, including Madagascar, Malawi, and Tanzania.

Several countries throughout Latin America and the Caribbean have been hit with worsening economic shocks and extreme weather events. Of particular concern are Haiti and Guatemala, which is experiencing the largest food crisis in the region, the report states.

Acute food insecurity has also risen in Ukraine compared to 2021 levels.  

The report includes a strong call to action for increased humanitarian assistance and investment in livelihood support, social safety nets, and long-term resilience building for poor and vulnerable populations.