US gets passing mark on food security

A new report on U.S. leadership in fighting world hunger sends a clear message: Feed the Future is working. Will this stop budget hawks from cutting the program out of the 2013 budget?

The State Department, the U.S. Agency for International Development and the Millennium Challenge Corp. received an “outstanding” mark from the 2012 Progress Report on U.S. Leadership in Global Agricultural Development. The report, released Thursday (April 26), also gave the Department of Agriculture and Congress a “good” evaluation. The Peace Corps was rated “satisfactory.”

The U.S. government’s work on agricultural development in Ethiopia, Ghana and Bangladesh — the focus of the report — were also deemed “outstanding.” U.S. budget for agriculture rose to more than $1.3 billion in 2012 from $639 million in 2009, Reuters reports.

The report, however, stresses the need for the United States to continue its efforts to champion food security and agricultural development. To slow down or retreat would be “tragic” for farmers who are relying on U.S. support and would severely “stain” America’s image, Roger Thurow said. Thurow is senior fellow for global agriculture and food policy at The Chicago Council on Global Affairs.

USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah said the agency is expecting the G-8 to build upon the commitments made to food security at the 2009 L’Aquila Summit. The G-8 is set to meet May 18 and 19 at Camp David, the U.S. president’s country residence.

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About the author

  • Jenny Lei Ravelo

    Jenny Lei Ravelo is a Devex Senior Reporter based in Manila. She covers global health, with a particular focus on the World Health Organization, and other development and humanitarian aid trends in Asia Pacific. Prior to Devex, she wrote for ABS-CBN, one of the largest broadcasting networks in the Philippines, and was a copy editor for various international scientific journals. She received her journalism degree from the University of Santo Tomas.