Bread and Freedom

The World Bank reported last month that 44 million people have been pushed into extreme poverty since June because of rising food prices. Indeed, world food prices rose to a record in February, accelerating the trend that began last year.

"The presence of civil war is associated with an increase in domestic food prices." —Rabah Arezki and Markus Brueckner, Food Prices and Political Instability, March 2011

Among the World Bank's recommendations in light of the burgeoning food crisis is to expand investment in strengthening environmentally sustainable agricultural productivity. In keeping with this policy, the Bank thus announced on March 21st that it would provide $70 million to the government of Mozambique to fund irrigation for sustainable agriculture. Last summer, Mozambique experienced street riots in response to the surge in food prices. Though the riots were short lived and did not bring about dramatic political changes, they were among the first signs that a greater unrest was building in the world.

Planet Aid supports the development of sustainable agriculture in developing countries. In2009 alone, Planet Aid donated more than $2 million to support smallholder farmers in Malawi and Mozambique. You can read more about these projects on the Farmers' Clubs page of our website.