Friday, February 16, 2007

Floods Lead to Food Shortage in Burundi

Source: Food shortage crippling Burundi -

In Burundi, floods have devastated 80% of last November's crop. The fields of the country, which should be rich with rice, sweet potatoes, and corn, have been turned into swamps. In turn, the country is likley to suffer a major food shortage.

Burundi has a visually deceptive landscape. It's the home of lush green hills, which give the illusion of a bountiful supply of vegetation. However, these hills have only contributed to the destruction of the crops because they are subject to erosion; a problem which was worsened due to the recent rains.

The government has declared a state of emergency in nearly half of the country's provinces and the United Nations' World Food Program is appealing for an extra $12 million to help alleviate the food shortage.

Governments of African countries have been criticized for not taking responsibility to ensure the food supply for their nations. These governments have been accused of mishandling food supplies and relying too heavily on the World Food Program. However, Burundi is so poor that it doesn't even have any food supply that could be mishandled. Therefore, its only hope at this point is the World Food Program.


How can extremely poor countries, such as Burundi, end their reliance on the World Food Program?

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