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The Fortnight

Going hungry

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Apr 15, 1998 | From the print edition

the Food and Agriculture Organisation ( fao ) has recently said that low global cereal stocks for a third year in a row could signal an imminent food crisis. This warning comes despite a good wheat crop anticipated in India, western Europe and north Africa.

In a special "Food Outlook" report released recently, the organisation predicts unfavourable conditions in China, Pakistan and parts of eastern Europe. Overall crop conditions have been satisfactory so far. But the area given to winter wheat in the us and Commonwealth and Independent States is lower than last year.

The fao outlook says that rice yield in Southeast Asia has been reduced by El Nio's effects. However, the threat of an El Nio-related drought in southern Africa has receded, it claims. The organi sation also expects lesser damage on Latin America's coarse grain output than what was earlier predicted.

fao estimates that 1997-98 will have a record production of oilseeds though international prices of oilseed products will stay relatively high.

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