Prepared by The University of Iowa Center for Human Rights (UICHR)*

160 — Number of days a child with protein-energy malnutrition (PEM), causing compromised immune systems and affecting every fourth child worldwide (70% in Asia, 26% in Africa), will suffer illness or serious infection each year (WHO, 2002)

2,720 — Number of kilocalories agriculture produces per person per day globally, sufficient to nourish every human being in the world, while currently some 850,000,000 people worldwide are undernourished — all largely because of failures in national and international distribution (FAO, 2002)

35,611 — Number of children who die from hunger or malnutrition each day, with more children dying of hunger every two days than all the U.S. soldiers who died in the Vietnam War, 1967-1975 (Peace News, 2002; FAO, 2002)

11,300,000 — Number of Ethiopians needing food aid in 2003, reflecting little if any relief from famine and malnutrition since the 1984-85 Sahel Famine when almost 1,000,000 Ethiopians died due to drought and lack of water collection and storage (Christian Children’s Funds of Canada, 2003)

12,100,000 — Number of U.S. households (11.1% of total) that were “food-insecure” in 2002, i.e., unable to access food sufficient for active, healthy living (U.S. Department of Agriculture, 2003)

50,000,000 — Number of people worldwide as of 2002 suffering from mental impairments caused by malnutrition-induced iodine deficiency disorders (WHO, 2002)

 250,000,000 — Number of people worldwide, mostly children, suffering the “hidden hunger” of Vitamin A deficiency, causing diarrhea, blindness, respiratory diseases, stunted growth, and death (Medical Research Council of South Africa, 2003)

 4,000,000,000 — Number of dollars given in U.S. government subsidies to U.S. corn growers in 2001, driving global corn prices below production cost which, via liberalized trade agreements, facilitated the “dumping” of nearly 6,000,000 metric tons of corn on Mexico’s market, forcing Mexican peasant farmers, unable to afford grain storage and dependent for food on about 43% of their gross income, to sell their crops at depressed prices and sustain immediate threats of hunger and malnutrition (U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, 2002)

*First published in The Iowa Review (Volume 34, Number 1) Spring 2004. Copyright © 2004 by The University of Iowa Center for Human Rights. For further information on human rights generally, please visit the UICHR web site.