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Rising Food Prices In East Africa Exacerbating Food Shortages, Famine, FAO Says

“The prices of grain and milk in the drought-hit Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia have risen to record highs, exacerbating hardship for the estimated 12.4 million people in the region who are facing severe food shortages and famine in some parts of Somalia,” according to the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization’s August food price monitor (.pdf), the U.N. News Centre reports (8/10). 

In Kenya, experts say the ongoing drought, “high fuel costs to transport food, the weak Kenyan shilling and maize export bans by neighboring countries” are contributing to the price increases, CNN reports (McKenzie/Kermeliotis, 8/11).

U.N. Deputy Emergency Relief Coordinator Catherine Bragg “warned Wednesday that the famine in East Africa hasn’t peaked and hundreds of thousands of people face imminent starvation and death without a massive global response,” and she “appealed to the international community for $1.3 billion needed urgently to save lives,” the Associated Press reports (Lederer, 8/10).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.