August 4, 2008

Nepal’s Remote Areas Hit Hard By Food Crisis

Nepal's remote areas hit hard by food crisis

KATHMANDU, Aug. 1 (Xinhua) -- The remote areas of central and far western Nepal are reeling under a serious food shortage owing to hindrance in supplies, natural calamities and almost negligible agricultural production, local media reported on Friday.

According to a report of a leading website,, the villagers regularly go to the market to scrounge for rice and other food provisions, only to return empty handed.

The Nepali Ministry of Agriculture said that nine districts are reeling under immense food shortage. The agriculture production in these districts has seen a massive decrease of up to 70 percent.

"Our study in these nine districts which are hit by shortage of food provisions have shown that 286,000 residents of 102 Village Development Committees are in immediate need of food assistance," said Hari Dahal, the ministry's spokesperson.

According to a recent report of the World Food Program, soaring food prices and inadequate supplied have directly affected 6.4 million people across the country.

The report indicated that 2.5 million people in the rural parts of the country are in immediate need of food assistance. An additional 3.9 million people in the rural Nepal are at the risk of becoming insecure due to food prices galloping for last few months.

"These people are highly vulnerable to food price increase and already have a very low level of food intake," said the report presented at the Round Table Conference on the Food Situation and Humanitarianism, organized jointly by the Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry early this week.

It cautioned that rising food prices pose a serious risk to the peace process.

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