Is Brazil feeding the world as Brazilians go hungry?

Posted by on November 4th, 2013 | 0 Comments »

The following post is an excerpt from Stephen Kurczy’s Christian Science Monitor article, “Is Brazil feeding the world as Brazilians go hungry?” Read more by clicking the link below.

Is Brazil feeding the world as Brazilians go hungry?

Brazil is the world’s top exporter of soy and poultry, much of it headed to China to feed its growing middle class. But some say Brazil is ignoring hunger at home.

By Stephen Kurczy, Correspondent / November 3, 2013

The competing interests between export demand and domestic need were underscored in an Oct. 16 report from the Global Harvest Initiative (GHI), a private advocacy group comprised of members DuPont, Elanco, IBM, John Deere, and Monsanto.

Brazil, according to the report, has increased its agricultural output by 120 percent over the past 20 years and is an example in the “success” of liberalizing trade and adapting private sector technologies.

But consideration of whether to label Brazil a “success” must also include an assessment of the country’s ability to actually feed its entire population, and its capability to continue ramping up food production, says Lester Brown of the Food Policy Institute. The United Nations identifies 7 percent of the population as malnourished, while a 2010 report from the International Institute for Sustainable Development labels nearly a third of Brazil’s 199 million people as facing food insecurity, meaning that they do not eat enough or well enough.

Brazil is the world’s top exporter of soy and poultry, much of which is feeding a growing middle class in China that is forecast to triple to 950 million by 2030, according to GHI. China is increasingly looking to production from Brazil, where annual agricultural production growth of 4.3 percent has the country on pace to produce twice what it needs to feed its own population by 2030.

“Agricultural production in Brazil far exceeds local demand, and the country is a reliable source of commodities for food-importing countries such as China,” according to the report.

Read the full article at

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