Shadow Foreign Minister, Kerry McCarthy MP, has backed the launch of a major new campaign that aims to tackle world hunger and climate change. The ‘Enough Food for Everyone IF’ campaign is the largest coalition of its kind in the UK since Make Poverty History in 2005. The campaign warns that in a world where there is enough food for everyone, the scandal of children growing up hungry also imposes a grave economic burden on the developing world, costing £78 billion over the next 15 years.
While great strides have been made in reducing poverty, hunger and climate change is still threatening to reverse much of what has been achieved. Hardworking poor farmers, especially women and their children, vulnerable and ordinary people everywhere face the highest food prices in a generation. In the UK, the numbers of people needing to use food banks has risen sharply. Climate change is making things even worse.
It is reported that 937 million children and young people (aged 15-40) will have their life chances permanently damaged by the impact of childhood hunger in 2025, with malnutrition costing developing countries an annual $125 billion (£78 billion) in lost economic output by 2030.
For Kerry the message is simple -no one should go hungry or be malnourished.
Land grabs, tax dodging and corruption have all deprived poor countries of the resources they end to feed themselves. Kerry McCarthy MP has taken action and has called upon the Prime Minister David Cameron and International Development Secretary, Justine Greening, tofreeze all lending that allows lands to happen in the developing world and us the UK’s Presdiency of the G8 to promote global action, stop tax dodging and end corruption.
The ‘IF’ movement challenges the Prime Minister to tackle 4 big IFs to help there be enough food for everyone:
• IF we stop poor farmers being forced off their land, and use the available agricultural land to grow food for people, not biofuels for cars.
• IF governments keep their promises on aid, invest to stop children dying from malnutrition and help the poorest people feed themselves through investment in small farmers.
• If governments close loopholes to stop big companies dodging tax in poor countries, so that millions of people can free themselves from hunger.
• IF we force governments and investors to be honest and open about the deals they make in the poorest countries that stop people getting enough food.
Backing the campaign Kerry McCarthy said:
“The message is simple. No one needs to go hungry or be malnourished. But we throw away millions of tonnes of edible food every year, when 1 in 8 people in the world go to bed hungry every night. This is wrong and I have joined forces with Oxfam to put a stop to this injustice.
“We in the Labour Party remain committed to spending 0.7 percent of our national income on international development assistance, because it is the morally responsible thing to do as we know that hunger on the streets poorest developing countries of will eventually have an impact on streets of Bristol.
“We are more committed than ever to eliminating hunger and poverty and that is why we have been speaking out against the great injustices that cause such profound poverty - the land grabs, tax dodging and corruption. As the UK assumes the Presidency of the G8, the Government has a unique opportunity to lead make food poverty history. We must act now to urge David Cameron and the International Development Secretary, Justine Greening to promote global action that will stop future generations going to bed hungry.”
Ben Jackson, Chief Executive of Bond and chair of the campaign, said:
“We should be proud of the great progress we are making as a world to reduce poverty, but it is still the reality that in a world where there is enough food for everyone, 1 in 8 people go hungry every day. This is nothing short of a scandal. We need a concerted effort from governments, civil society and philanthropists to tackle the root causes of this problem and together to ensure that no child has to go hungry.”