North Korea’s food crisis worsens

Crop production will be lower than average in 2019. According to FAO, one North Korean in ten suffers from hunger. As a result of drought, this year’s harvest will be the worst in five years.

Pyongyang (AsiaNews/Agencies) – North Korea's crop production is below average this year due to unfavourable weather conditions. This is expected to worsen the country’s already serious food shortages.

“Overall, a below-average output is estimated for the 2019 main season crops,” says the Crop Monitor Early Warning report by GEOGLAM, a Switzerland-based crop monitoring organisation, released on Friday.

As a consequence of North Korea’s drought, food production in 2018 dropped considerably, UN humanitarian agencies report. This has put the lives of millions at risk. North Korea eventually admitted to "drawbacks" in agricultural production.

At present, one North Korean in ten already suffers from hunger and needs urgent food aid, the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) reports. Making matters worse, this year’s crop production is expected to be the worst of the last five, again mainly due to drought.

In June, South Korea offered to provide North Korea with 50,000 tonnes of rice to help reduce malnutrition, which affects especially children and women of reproductive age; however, the North rejected the offer because South Korea took part in joint military exercises with the United States.