Work Area: Combatting Hunger

Africa is the world’s most food-insecure region, which has broader implications not just for food security, but also for peace and stability on the continent. The Foundation’s Combatting Hunger programme advocates for the transformation of African agriculture and food systems to improve food and nutrition security and drive socio-economic development. We mobilise leadership and high-level commitment, using our convening power to bring together leaders from across sectors to trigger cooperation that benefits African farmers and their communities.

A threat to peace

  • For the third year in a row, there has been a rise in world hunger.1
  • In Africa alone, more than 256 million people suffer from hunger.1
  • Climate change could increase hunger and malnutrition by up to 20 per cent by 2050.2

Hand of African woman sorting seeds after harvest.

What we did in 2018:

  • The Foundation co-hosted a dialogue on intra-African food trade and market integration with the African Development Bank during the 2018 African Economic Conference.
  • Mr Annan published an editorial in Nature Magazine as a companion to a new study by the Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation of the University of Washington on “Mapping child growth failure in Africa between 2000 and 2015”. Mr Annan emphasised the importance of data for policy-making, particularly in the global development context. He stressed that robust data is critical to ending malnutrition in Africa.
  • In his final article, Kofi Annan drew attention to snakebite – a serious, but largely neglected public health issue. He highlighted that snakebite is a ‘disease of the poor’, which disproportionately affects smallholder farmers and their families in rural communities of Sub-Saharan Africa, Asia, Oceania and Latin America, and called for immediate action to confront this threat to life and livelihoods in poor communities.
  • The Foundation advocated for the transformation of African agriculture and food systems to improve food and nutrition security.


Hand touching the wheat in a field.

What we are doing now:

  • The Foundation has plans to join a group of partners in Ghana to contribute to the promotion of the highly nutritious orange-fleshed sweet potato.
  • Together with the African Development Bank, we are producing a study on the state of the food market in Africa to identify policy options and strategies to boost food trade within the continent.