What causes
Image depicting What causes  Hunger?

Conflict, extreme weather events, natural disasters and poverty. Ending hunger is the greatest challenge of our time, but together it’s solvable.

Ending hunger isn’t a question of supply. The world produces enough food to feed everyone on the planet. Zero hunger is achievable, but there’s still a long way to go. Below are the main drivers of hunger in our world today.


Conflict is the #1 driver of hunger, and it is entirely man-made. It destroys economies and infrastructure, making it impossible for people to find or afford food.

Extreme Weather

Extreme weather events like droughts or floods makes growing food harder every year, especially for small-scale farmers who lack the technology and tools to adapt.

Natural Disasters

Earthquakes and hurricanes can destroy entire communities, farms and infrastructure, leaving families homeless and starving.

Extreme Poverty

People who live below the global poverty line often can’t afford the nutritious food their families need, limiting their children’s early physical and educational development.

Square photograph of Extreme Weather Detailed photograph of Extreme Weather
Photo: WFP/Micah Albert

Extreme Weather

Climate change is one of the leading causes of global hunger, causing more frequent and intense extreme weather events. Over 80% of the world’s hungry people live in disaster-prone countries.

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Detailed photograph of Food Waste

Food Waste

Food loss and food waste are major contributors to global hunger. If we could recover all the food we waste, we could feed every hungry person on the planet twice over.

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Detailed photograph of Women and Hunger
Photo: WFP/Alexis Masciarelli

Women and Hunger

In nearly two-thirds of countries around the world, women are more likely than men to suffer from hunger and malnourishment.

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I want to help save lives.

Photo: WFP/Luis Tato

Hunger and malnutrition are part of an ongoing cycle, as both a cause and effect of poverty and inequality.

Ending hunger is a big challenge, but together it’s solvable.

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Take the Hunger Quiz

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Climate is the 2nd leading cause of hunger. Click and scroll through our interactive infographic to learn more.

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From Our Blog

Bold and Broad Action Needed to Ensure Food is Well Grown and Well Used

The scope and scale of the world’s food imbalance and its consequences on people and the planet require bold and broad action.

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Featured Media

Hacking Hunger - Episode 36: Hunger and Rain: The Story of The Dry Corridor
Photo: WFP/Francisco Fion
Hacking Hunger - Episode 36: Hunger and Rain: The Story of The Dry Corridor
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