The country’s agricultural experts have expressed that due to the current flood, a severe food shortage crisis may emerge in the entire country, including Sindh, during the current situation, more than 50 percent of people do not have access to adequate food, the Vice Chancellor has appealed to the international community including international donors, G20, OIC to help Pakistan, FAO should put Pakistan’s case before the world.
World Food Day was observed under the auspices of the Institute of Food Science and Technology IFST of Sindh Agriculture University, Tandojam, in collaboration with Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), on Monday, where the experts speaking said that due to floods in Pakistan severe damage to agriculture due to flood food shortage in the future has been expressed. Speaking at the ceremony, Vice Chancellor Dr. Fateh Marri said that more than 50 percent of the people in the country do not have access to adequate food, and there is a shortage of food in Thar. The mortality rate among women and children is increasing rapidly due to shortage of nutrient food.
He said that the G20 and OIC should include the food security of Pakistan in their agenda to help Pakistan, while the old agricultural system in the country should be modernized and diversified. He said that the production could not be increased within the last 20 years; still our agriculture is running on only a few commodities. VC said that donors should right off the loans, and industrial countries should compensate Pakistan for the losses of climate change.
Dr. Rubina Wahaj, the provincial head of FAO, said that climate change has left negative effects on agriculture and food, due to which food security risk has increased. She said still more than 83 million people in the world are suffering from food insecurity, while people do not even have the purchasing power of food.
She said FAO is working with Sindh Agriculture University and other institutions on the international food system, focusing more on supporting and training small farmers, and wants to create many other opportunities, including nutrition for rural children and women.
Dr. Jan Muhammad Marri, Pro Vice Chancellor, SAU Sub Campus Umerkot said that on the one hand there are many concerns regarding the health of women and children due to lack of food in Thar, on the other hand there is enough organic vegetables and fruits in Thar. In this regard, Sindh Agriculture University is starting work on arid agriculture instead of canal agriculture in Thar.
Dr. Aijaz Ali Khooharo, Dean of Faculty of Social Sciences said that there are other causes of food insecurity, especially lack of suitable storage, wastage of food and non-utilization of food are also important reasons.
Dr, Aijaz Ahmed Soomro, Director, IFST said that Pakistan is ranked at 99th with a score of 26.1; on the Global Hunger Index of 121 countries, this makes Pakistan as a country with “serious” hunger level. This is an alarming situation.
Dr. Muhammad Ismail Kambhar said that Pakistan is self-sufficient in various agricultural commodities and produces more than most other countries in the world, but in the current situation, the situation food has become serious, while the health and growth of children is not going well due to the lack of nutrition in children.
Dr. Tahseen Fatima Miano, Dr. Shahzor Gul Khaskheli, Dr. Asia Akber Panhwer, Dr. Dilip and others also spoke on this occasion, while Director IFST, Dr. Aijaz Soomro, Dr. Asadullah Marri, Dr. Bhai Khan Solangi, Dr. Muharram Qumbrani, FAO’s Miss Sadia Siddiqui, Dr. Jam Ghulam Mustafa Sahito, Zahoor Ahmad Palijo, Miss Mahwish and others were also participated, while a food exhibition was organized by IFST, which was inaugurated by Vice Chancellor Dr. Fateh Marri and Dr. Rubina Wahaj, in which students displayed food, juices, jam jellies, biscuits, and other food items and posters were prepared.