Because many lost their jobs due to the pandemic, the number of food shortages in the country increased, resulting in to increase in hunger among Filipinos.
Based on a survey conducted by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute (FNRI), it appears that six out of every 10 Filipinos or 62.1% of Filipinos experience moderate or severe food insecurity or malnutrition.
The survey was conducted from November 3 to December 3, which also revealed that 71.7% of households buy food through borrowing while 66.3% borrow from relatives or neighbors.
According to the survey, food shortages increased between April and May last year due to the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) in which 5,717 households with 7,240 individuals were affected.
At the same time, Malacañang promised to take steps to ensure that there is enough food in the country.
Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said that although they are saddened by the said number, the said DOST survey is still needed to determine the impact of the problem caused by Covid-19.
He said the Duterte administration already has a program to provide employment and livelihood to Filipinos.
Hunger among Filipinos increased due to pandemic
In September 2020, Social Weather Stations (SWS) recorded the highest incidence of hunger of the Philippines after 7.6 million families said they went hungry at least once in the past three months amid the pandemic.
The proportion of households who experienced involuntary hunger increased to 30.7 percent from July to September, breaking the record of 23.8 percent registered in March 2012.
The survey showed that 22 percent or an estimated 5.5 million families experienced moderate hunger in the last few months.
Moderate hunger is defined as those who experienced hunger “only once” or “a few times” in the last three months.
Meanwhile, there were 8.7 percent or 2.2 million households who experienced severe hunger or experienced it “often” or “always” during the covered period.
Both the latest moderate and severe hunger rates also spiked to record highs.
Meanwhile, the unemployment rate of 8.8 percent in February 2021 is higher than that in January 2021 and October 2020, both with 8.7 percent. The estimate was the third highest since April 2020. The highest unemployment was registered at 17.6 percent in April 2020.
The number of unemployed Filipinos 15 years old and over was posted at 4.2 million in February 2021, or about 234 thousand higher than the reported 4.0 million in January 2021.
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