While Covid-19 spikes rapidly with over 6 million confirmed cases around the world, the Ebola virus has struck back alongside the river of Congo.
To make matters worse, Ebola, a highly deadly virus that rages through South Africa for years, has returned in the northern province, Congo. Despite the devastating economic crisis and social impact, the seriousness of the potential food crisis should be given primacy and attention to what the future holds.
Food is the most basic necessity of everything to us, as human beings. The prediction of the result of the food crisis outbreak on a worldwide scale is much more than the idea of hunger. One thing leads to another, we could be facing something that could damage the whole society, eventually leads to a world-wide riot. The idea of a food crisis on a world scale is way exceeded to be contained within our current global economic and political structure.
2020 has been tough on the earth. When you take everything into account, the plague of locusts, Covid-19, now even joined by the Ebola virus. The chance of a catastrophic food crisis is getting more and more likely if we do nothing.
Following Vietnam’s announcement to ban all rice exports, 12 countries also announced restrictions on food exports, and 2 additional countries joined the initiative. Despite Vietnam’s announcement to begin exporting again, this initiative has caused global waves and fears that as pandemic spreads, more countries could follow and restrict food exports, thus hitting global food supplies and threatening global food security.
A. The last time – Ebolavirus
The recent pandemic outbreak resembles the 2014 Ebola outbreak in West Africa. The 2014 Ebola outbreak spread through Africa for over a year, infecting about 30,000 people and killed about 10,000 people. During that time there was wide-spread panic in Africa.
The data was sourced from Wikipedia, the charts were produced by WPS Office
During this time, the Ebola outbreak had broken the supply chains to agricultural markets. The inability many farmers faced to selling their food, coupled with government restrictions on working outside the country led to a significant decline in the labor force and created a serious impact on food production.
In Liberia at that time, 47% of farmers were unable to farm the land. Restrictions and market closures disrupted the supply flow of food and other essential goods. The supply shortage led to higher prices for essential goods. The economic decline reduced the household purchasing ability and also reduced access to food. As a result, the population became undernourished and hunger increased the spread of the epidemic and social unrest.
The lesson from the 2014 Ebola outbreak is therefore very clear, even though health needs have become urgent and of primary concern, we mustn’t lose sight of maintaining livelihoods or food security. Additionally, if livelihoods are destroyed, this can lead to tensions and social unrest.
B. This is a complex issue, multiple factors intensify the problem
In the long term, the causes of a food crisis are both “natural disasters” and “man-made disasters”. The primary factor for “natural disasters” are many, some include the locust plague and pandemic. For “man-made disasters” the main causes are government policy and market speculation.
While the world is focused on the new coronavirus, East AfricaContinue reading