Despite having surplus food to feed its population, 43% of thePakistan’s citizens remain food insecure with 18% facing a severe shortage, said World Food Program (WFP) Country Director Lola Castro who declared Pakistan a food-sufficient country with largest irrigation system, but also a place that remained incapable of serving its large population.
Around 15% of the population under the age of five is acutely malnourished. Close to 43% children (around 10 million) face stunted growth and are chronically malnourished, said Castro.
“The problem is not food production, but poverty and illiteracy that bar people from access to food with required calories and nutrition,” said Castro. “Children and women are the most vulnerable as far as food insecurity is concerned. In cases where they do get food, it is nowhere near the required level of calories and nutrition, especially for mothers and growing children. Close to 18% of the country’s population gets less than 1,700 calories per day, making them severely food insecure. The requirement for a healthy individual is at least 2,350 calories per day.”