The Pakistani Spectator

A Candid Blog

Food Crisis in Pakistan

By Dr. Hassan Isfahani • Apr 21st, 2008 • Category: Politics, Worth A Second Look • 12 Comments

The calls for “Atta” from all quarters of the society are rising to a chorus. Due to the food shortage in Pakistan, the new government of Pakistan Democratic Alliance is all set to become a glutton for punishment and humiliation in very near future. Though it would be unfair to blame them for the looming food crisis in the country, but an empty stomach doesn’t understand logic or argument.

One may ridicule United States in many regards, but when it comes to statistics the auxiliary offshoots of this world body often prove right. United Nations World Food Program (WFP) has predicted that Pakistan is in the grave danger of becoming an acutely food insecure country in the very near future and according to other sources it is expected that food riots would break in the streets.

WFP country director Wolfgang Berbinger has told media that currently 60 million food insecure people are present in the country, the increase of 35 per cent in wheat prices and more for some other food items, did not match the increase in wage rate that was 18 per cent as compared to last year. According to the WFP stats, 38 per cent of Pakistanis are food insecure, and that basically means that they are not able to afford poverty line intake of 2,350 kcal per day. WFP also reveal that approximately 12.5 of wheat is wasted on way from field to the consumer whereas vegetable loss is 30 per cent.

The food insecurity is in every district of Pakistan. In the most populated province of Pakistan, in Punjab, out of 34 district only 9 are almost food secure. In NWFP, out of 16 districts, only five are food secure. In Sindh, out of 15 districts, only 9 are food secure. In Balochistan, out of 25 districts only 4 are food secure.

These statistics are alarming and demand immediate attention from the high-ups. The restoration of judiciary and the matter of war on terror are extremely important, but prolonged hunger can turn any nation into angry animals frantically searching for food to appease their natural instinct.

So it is the need of hour that government should start working on war footings about extending the crop maximization plans to balance food price inflation and improvement in storage and harvesting-thrashing to control wastage of food. Government needs to understand that easy and cheap food availability, access and deliverance to everyone at everyplace is the key to their survival.

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12 Responses »

  1. Why then you are exporting rice and wheat to UAE, saudi arabia?

  2. “…….a glutton for punishment and humiliation in very near future.”

    What does this suppose to mean?

  3. dear isphani ,very impressive action to pick such an important issue .this is what is the need of time .but let me say that i do not agree with your comment that new government is not to be blamed .
    dr you must be aware of the term “triage ” this is a term used extensively in and during massive disaster management for “sorting ” out cases as per priority and seriousness . the procedure is conducted the moment casualty is received in emergeny department so to sort and initiate life saving treatment as any delay may adversely takes the patient to the stage of irreversible outcome .
    my point is ,after successful succession ,what are the factors that these high ups are still in the phase of assessment .why havent they started taking action in this regard so to make their population at large in to the circle of satisfaction and are absolutely right that empty stomach does not understand logics and justification.and if i say ,there is no justification for this lapse of essential duty .they got to do something and it should have been initiated much earlier .but if i recall current events that are in conductivity ,i will be the first person to second you and warn that a glutton for punishment and humiliation in very near future.and as per French Proverb”Glutton: one who digs his grave with his teeth.” - you see these champs have not even come out of the euphoria and are still manuvering the governance so to make the place of their desired thoughts as per their lust .they have not even executed a single essential measure in the format of relief .they have yet to establish that who will be the president and the primeminister and whether assembly should be a graduate or under graduate . just check out their intentions .a person who could not achieve a minimal qualification as graduation ,will be the decision maker of the country ,and will decide our future .this is the theme of their insane practise .should we expect such indivisuals who are not even graduate to float a policy ,plan and execute mangement .design procedure ,fight at the front of international relation,manage the inflation,poverty ,terrorism and internal and external aggression. you got to need persons of high profile and calibre if you really wana get rid of these issues .even profile and calibre will not be sufficient if committment and loyality are sacrificed .this is the time that these awrded leaders should show a classical behavior and excellence and pay sensitively ,required attention that is the requirement of time so to overcome and escape these issues from the lives of our people and nation.

  4. Pakistan is facing multivariate problems now a day; price hike, wheat crisis and unannounced load shedding are among the top most problems. Atta scarcity and prolonged and unannounced load shedding has made the life of masses miserable. The shortage of flour continues in the country as 20 kilogram bag of atta is no longer available in the retail shops and local markets. The unpacked atta is being sold at Rs 25 to Rs 30 per kilogram. In some of the shops where 20 kilogram bag is available, it is being sold at a rate as high as Rs 350, although flour mills are getting full supply quota of wheat, they are grinding only a portion of the corps that cause shortage of flour and the poor people are compelled to buy atta on unbelievable high prices.
    Under these circumstances, many poor people are committing suicide due to frustration and hopelessness. The incidents of suicide are indeed a matter of shame in a Muslim society; to deal effectively the current period of trial we all must remember the teachings of Islam and help the deprived. Moreover, those who have created artificial shortage of basic life commodities require strict action severe punishment by the government.

  5. i need you to answer my question that pakistan rely on agriculture then why the food crisis is here? is it due to the reason that the whole world is suffering food crisis?

  6. Nothing is short…its totally engineered shortage. Few big groups are controlling Int’l market and enjoying maximum profits.

  7. politicains olny care about their bank balances. they are making strategies that how to get aid and then transfer this aid to their accounts very smartly.

  8. if this country does not make action they will starve

  9. are they with the UN

  10. people will die!

  11. sO what if people will die, there will be no change ….

  12. salam sir,
    would you like to farward your article, which you have written in april 2010. sir i want to your article sir.thanks

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