United NationsDepartment of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development

End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture

Targets and Indicators



By 2030, end hunger and ensure access by all people, in particular the poor and people in vulnerable situations, including infants, to safe, nutritious and sufficient food all year round


Prevalence of undernourishment


Prevalence of moderate or severe food insecurity in the population, based on the Food Insecurity Experience Scale (FIES)



By 2030, end all forms of malnutrition, including achieving, by 2025, the internationally agreed targets on stunting and wasting in children under 5 years of age, and address the nutritional needs of adolescent girls, pregnant and lactating women and older persons


Prevalence of stunting (height for age <-2 standard deviation from the median of the World Health Organization (WHO) Child Growth Standards) among children under 5 years of age


Prevalence of malnutrition (weight for height >+2 or <-2 standard deviation from the median of the WHO Child Growth Standards) among children under 5 years of age, by type (wasting and overweight)



By 2030, double the agricultural productivity and incomes of small-scale food producers, in particular women, indigenous peoples, family farmers, pastoralists and fishers, including through secure and equal access to land, other productive resources and inputs, knowledge, financial services, markets and opportunities for value addition and non-farm employment


Volume of production per labour unit by classes of farming/pastoral/forestry enterprise size


Average income of small-scale food producers, by sex and indigenous status



By 2030, ensure sustainable food production systems and implement resilient agricultural practices that increase productivity and production, that help maintain ecosystems, that strengthen capacity for adaptation to climate change, extreme weather, drought, flooding and other disasters and that progressively improve land and soil quality


Proportion of agricultural area under productive and sustainable agriculture



By 2020, maintain the genetic diversity of seeds, cultivated plants and farmed and domesticated animals and their related wild species, including through soundly managed and diversified seed and plant banks at the national, regional and international levels, and promote access to and fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from the utilization of genetic resources and associated traditional knowledge, as internationally agreed


Number of plant and animal genetic resources for food and agriculture secured in either medium or long-term conservation facilities


Proportion of local breeds classified as being at risk, not-at-risk or at unknown level of risk of extinction



Increase investment, including through enhanced international cooperation, in rural infrastructure, agricultural research and extension services, technology development and plant and livestock gene banks in order to enhance agricultural productive capacity in developing countries, in particular least developed countries


The agriculture orientation index for government expenditures


Total official flows (official development assistance plus other official flows) to the agriculture sector



Correct and prevent trade restrictions and distortions in world agricultural markets, including through the parallel elimination of all forms of agricultural export subsidies and all export measures with equivalent effect, in accordance with the mandate of the Doha Development Round


Producer Support Estimate


Agricultural export subsidies



Adopt measures to ensure the proper functioning of food commodity markets and their derivatives and facilitate timely access to market information, including on food reserves, in order to help limit extreme food price volatility


Indicator of food price anomalies

Progress and Info


The total number of persons suffering from severe food insecurity has been on the rise since 2015, and there are still millions of malnourished children. The economic slowdown and the disruption of food value chains caused by the pandemic are exacerbating hunger and food insecurity. In addition, the upsurge in desert locusts remains alarming in East Africa and Yemen, where 35 million persons already experience acute food insecurity. Owing to the pandemic, some 370 million schoolchildren are missing the free school meals that they rely on. Measures to strengthen food production and distribution systems must be taken immediately to mitigate and minimize the impacts of the pandemic.

An estimated 26.4 per cent of the world population, about 2 billion persons, were affected by moderate or severe food insecurity in 2018, an increase from 23.2 per cent in 2014, owing mainly to increases in food insecurity in sub-Saharan Africa and Latin America. Slightly more than 700 million persons, or 9.2 per cent of the world population, experienced severe food insecurity in 2018, implying reductions in the quantity of food consumed to the extent that they possibly experienced hunger.

The proportion of children under 5 years of age suffering from chronic undernutrition, as well as stunting (being too short for one’s age), decreased, from 23.1 per cent in 2015 to 21.3 per cent in 2019. Globally, 144 million children under 5 years of age were still affected by stunting in 2019. Three quarters of them lived in Central and Southern Asia or sub-Saharan Africa.

Globally, 47 million children under 5 years of age, or 6.9 per cent, were affected by acute undernutrition or wasting (low weight for one’s height) in 2019 conditions generally caused by limited nutrient intake and infection. More than half of the wasted children lived in Central and Southern Asia. Childhood overweight affected 38 million children under 5 years of age worldwide, or 5.6 per cent, in 2019. Wasting and overweight may coexist at levels considered to be medium to high, the so-called double burden of malnutrition. In Northern Africa and South-Eastern Asia, the rate of wasting was 7.2 per cent and 8.2 per cent, respectively, while the rate of overweight was 11.3 per cent and 7.5 per cent, respectively, in 2019.

The share of government expenditure in the agricultural sector, measured by government expenditure in agriculture divided by the sector’s share of GDP, fell worldwide, from 0.42 to 0.31 to 0.28 per cent in 2001, 2015 and 2018, respectively. Moreover, aid to agriculture in developing countries fell, from nearly 25 per cent of all donors’ sector-allocable aid in the mid-1980s to only 5 per cent, in 2018.

In 2019, sharp increases in food prices were concentrated largely in sub-Saharan Africa, driven by production shocks and macroeconomic difficulties. The lingering impact of prolonged conflict and extreme weather conditions in some areas were additional factors.

Source: Progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals, Report of the Secretary-General, https://undocs.org/en/E/2020/57