July 12, 2021

The government will step its efforts to eliminate hunger, according to Nograles.

According to Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles, the national government would continue to boost up efforts to eliminate hunger in the wake of a study that revealed that 49 percent of Filipinos claimed they felt impoverished.

He cited the findings of the national Social Weather Survey (SWS), which was conducted from April 28 to May 2, 2021, which revealed that only 17 percent of Filipino families considered themselves to be “not poor,” 49 percent considered themselves to be “poor,” and 33 percent considered themselves to be “borderline poor.”

According to the SWS poll conducted in November 2020, 48 percent of those who identified as “poor” identified themselves as such.

According to the SWS poll, of the projected 12.4 million “poor” households in May 2021, 2.4 million were “newly poor,” 1.2 million were “typically poor,” and 8.8 million were “always poor,” with 2.4 million being “newly poor.”

As head of the Inter-Agency Task Force on Zero Hunger, Nograles said that the numbers were anticipated, given the limits on livelihoods imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic regulations currently in place at the time of the survey.

However, he noted that the establishment of the Zero Hunger task force, as well as efforts by the Department of Agriculture to improve local food production, “may have had a positive impact and may have contributed to preventing self-rated food poverty numbers in 2020 from increasing as a result of the pandemic lockdowns.”

The president stated in a news release that “increasing data” suggests that the government should continue its current initiatives while ramping its efforts to end hunger.

Citing data from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), Nograles said the country’s estimated self-sufficiency for ratio aggregated food products had increased from 81.3 percent in 2019 to 83 percent in 2020, which means that 83 percent of the country’s food supply in 2020 came from domestic production.

In order to identify areas of concern that need to be addressed, he said that the Zero Hunger task group is presently examining carefully recent self-rated food poverty survey data.

Nograles expressed optimism on Wednesday that the new government would continue initiatives and projects that were begun by the Duterte administration, including attempts to execute the nation’s National Food Policy, which seeks to eradicate hunger in the country by 2030.

“Kung sino yung susunod na administrasyon po nila ay ipagpatuloy nila kung ano po ang nakalagay sa ating National Food Policy road plan at kung maari pa nilang improve, mas mabuti po nila,” says the official. “Kung sino yung susunod na administrasyon (I hope that whoever is in the next administration would continue what is in our National Food Policy road map and if they can enhance it, the better). They must also remain dedicated to eliminating hunger and malnutrition in the nation, he expressed optimism.

With the signing of an executive order (EO) in January 2019, Duterte sought to accelerate the government’s battle against hunger. The task force was formed as a result of the order.

In order to achieve zero hunger, the task force is tasked to guarantee that government policies, programs, and projects aimed at achieving that goal are “coordinated, responsive, and successful.”

If the Philippines is to reach zero hunger by 2030, the incidence of hunger should be reduced by 25 percent every two and a half years, according to the World Food Programme.

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