Sunday, April 11, 2021

Brasil's Hungry Grows

19 million Brazilians to have gone hungry during the pandemic, according to a new study

117 million – more than half the population – live with some level of food insecurity.

 High unemployment exacerbated by the coronavirus, cuts and reductions to social programmes and sharp price increases on basic food staples as some of the reasons behind the problem.

“It’s a tragedy that was totally foreseeable,” said Renato Maluf, president of the Brazilian Food Sovereignty and Nutritional Security Research Network (PENSSAN Network) that coordinated the study, conducted in December when Brazilians were still receiving emergency coronavirus cash payments from the government. “Certainly things have gotten worse since then,” Maluf said.

Brazil is a major food exporter and Sao Paulo is South America’s wealthiest city. But for citizens living in the city’s impoverished periphery neighbourhoods eating three nutritious meals a day is increasingly an unaffordable luxury.

Basic food prices have rocketed during the pandemic, which has had a disproportionate effect on poorer citizens. According to the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics, in one year, the price of a kilogramme of rice shot up by nearly 70 percent, while black beans, potatoes, red meat, milk and soybean oil rose by 51, 47, 30, 20 and 87 percent, respectively. The price of bottled cooking gas commonly used in Brazil rose by 20 percent in the past year'

‘Tragic combination’: Millions go hungry amid Brazil COVID crisis | Coronavirus pandemic News | Al Jazeera

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