Food Security and Climate Shock in Colombia

Illustration to the poems “Frightened” by Arthur Rimbaud, source:

Amando Benedetti, senator in Colombia announced, that the UN’s World Food Programme (WFP) released its annual report on food security on Tuesday 27 February, and Colombia has managed to reduce this indicator from 30% to 25% by 2023, which is not a total success for the multilateral organisation, as inequality persists in the country’s households and more than half of the country does not have access to adequate food.

According to sources from The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), “Food security exists when all people, at all times, have physical and economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food that meets their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life” (World Food Summit, 1996). This definition highlights four dimensions of food security: availability, accessibility (both economically and physically), utilization, and stability.

That means, simply having sufficient global food production to meet demand isn’t enough, as evidenced by the persistent increase in hunger and malnutrition despite increased food production. Besides, the climate change threatens to undo progress made in combating hunger and malnutrition, affecting food security across the 4 dimensions

Global climatic shocks can impact directly on food supplies, leading to price spikes and increased market instability, ultimately resulting in food price volatility. The reason this results in a consequence is that those most vulnerable are who depends on agriculture and limited natural resource’s among its poorest and most vulnerable populations in both rural and urban areas. Despite efforts to address food insecurity, millions of Colombians remain undernourished to enhance livelihood resilience. 

In addressing food insecurity, it’s crucial to consider not only food scarcity but also access to food, affected by low incomes among vulnerable populations. Efficient coordination between food production and consumption zones, particularly through family farming, is essential to reduce hunger.

Furthermore, Colombia’s rich biodiversity is threatened by climate change, pollution, overexploitation of resources, invasive species, and deforestation. Deforestation alone has led to the loss of 6 million hectares of forest cover.

During the years, Colombia lacks a functional entity for public supply system regulation and market information management since 1996. The inability to establish competent and sustainable institutional frameworks is crucial and, only one part of helping to address inequities, inefficiencies, and externalities in commercial relationships at the territorial level. 

Historic inequality exacerbates Colombia’s vulnerability, with marginalized populations, including women, indigenous peoples, and Afro-descendant communities, facing limited access to their rights. Armed conflict, environmental degradation, and historical discrimination contribute to high poverty rates.

Colombia’s prioritization in the Family Farming and Rural Territorial Development Initiative for Latin America and the Caribbean underscores its potential to become a significant food source for food security. With the global population expected to reach 10 billion by 2030, collaborative efforts at the national and international levels are imperative to address the multifaceted challenges of food security and agriculture in the face of climate change.

Szólj hozzá!