A World Food Programme official has warned that food shortages around the world could worsen next year, despite the resumption of Ukraine grain exports last month.
Corinne Fleischer, WFP Regional Director for the Middle East, Northern Africa and Eastern Europe, told NHK on Monday that the resumption of agricultural exports out of conflict-hit Ukraine was a major step forward.
But Fleischer said the Russian invasion created havoc for farmlands and infrastructure in Ukraine, including eastern regions where a lot of food is usually produced. She also said farmers are at the front lines.
She expects the Ukrainian grain harvest in the upcoming season to be about 30 percent smaller than the previous season, which saw a good harvest of 100 million tons.
She warned of a possible decline in global farm production. She said farmers across the globe are having difficulties securing fertilizers due to soaring prices after Russia, a top fertilizer producer, throttled exports.
She also expected adverse effects on global food security from abnormal weather conditions, including flooding in Pakistan and droughts in China and Europe.
She said the problem this year is that people cannot buy food because prices "have gone up so dramatically." She warned that, if this trend persists into next year, there may be "not enough food to feed the world."
She asked Japan -- the chair of Group of Seven meetings next year -- to bring up the issue at future meetings.