By: Hassan Zaman H2-L
A Level Student Aitchison College
Food insecurity in Pakistan, a nation blessed with fertile lands and abundant agricultural resources, is a jarring paradox that raises vital ethical and moral questions. Food, besides being a necessity, is a basic human right. Yet, Pakistan, a country brimming with culture and history, millions of people still grapple with the harsh truth of food insecurity. This crisis goes beyond mere economic and logistical issues, however; It is an insurmountable roadblock to the nation’s progress, compounded by poverty, income inequality, and a broken food distribution system.
Pakistan boasts fertile lands, diverse climates, and abundant resources. But food insecurity remains a pressing issue. Poverty and income inequality are the prime suspects in this culinary mystery. It’s the bitter truth: a prosperous nation can’t thrive when its people can’t put food on their tables. Since the lockdown back in 2020 the country has been struggling massively in regards to its economic output, or setting a stable currency for its own people to use. Oil prices, and gas prices are not the only things that have gone up. As of 2023 the inflation rate in Pakistan is set to be a jarring 31%.
The talk around the town is that this seemingly existential crisis for all of Pakistan really means “all” of the poor people in the country. With Pakistan facing astonishing income inequality division, and clear sects dividing the general populous it would not be wrong in stating that the issue has highlighted the severe income disparity people in Pakistan face.
Malnutrition, the neon warning sign of food insecurity, is alarmingly high in Pakistan, especially among children. It’s a scarlet letter on our conscience. Food insecurity isn’t just about hungry people; it also fans the flames of health disparities. When you can’t access nutritious food, you’re essentially defenceless against diseases. Malnutrition weakens not only bodies but also our healthcare system. And that is what we see happening to the children of our country. Brain eating amoeba, polio, hepatitis, diseases that could once have been completely neglected are now ravaging the young spirits of our nations, devouring not only their right to eat, but now their right to live.
So, what’s the secret ingredient to fix this recipe of woe? It’s a basic revamp of our agricultural and food distribution systems. We need policies that give small-scale farmers their due and promote sustainable agriculture. The majority of our folks depend on farming for their bread, quite literally. Fair prices, modern techniques, and better irrigation infrastructure are must-haves. But how do we achieve that under this political cloud of uncertainty? It is by enforcing direct measures through the Pakistan ministry of agriculture.
We must understand that access to food isn’t a privilege; it’s a right. Issues sich as Food waste should also be looked at with concern. Shockingly, in a country struggling with food scarcity, tons of food goes to waste due to subpar storage and transportation. We must tighten our belts and streamline the supply chain, cutting waste and sending surplus grub to those in need.
It’s outrageous that, in a nation overflowing with agricultural riches, millions sleep with empty stomachs. Let’s tackle the root causes, from poverty to a faulty food supply chain. It’s a tough nut to crack, but together, we can turn the tables and ensure no one sleeps hungry in the Jinnah’s land of the pure.