EU addresses food security and affordability as Russia creates global food crisis

Russia’s unjustified invasion of Ukraine is aggravating a global food crisis. EU countries are coordinating actions to help people face soaring prices and provide relief to the world’s poorest.

What is the EU doing to address the food crisis?

The EU and its member states are presenting a united front against Russia’s military aggression in Ukraine and are strongly committed to tackling the global food crisis.

Food security is the major global challenge today. Today’s global food crisis is being exacerbated by Russia’s war against Ukraine. Famine is looming in many parts of the world, and now is the time for all of us to translate our political commitments into concrete action.

European Council President Charles Michel at the Global Food Security Summit, September 2022.

A major priority for EU countries in addressing growing food insecurity is to help Ukraine export its agri-food production, which has been severely compromised by the Russian invasion.

Ukraine is a key producer and exporter of food staples, such as wheat and maize. Some 90% of its wheat exports went to Africa and Asia between 2016 and 2021, supporting food security in some of the most disadvantaged regions of the world.

With Russia’s blockade of Ukraine’s ports from the start of the war, around 20 million tonnes of grain were stuck in storage silos on the Black Sea shores.

In May 2022, the European Commission presented an action plan to establish solidarity lanes. The goal was to develop alternative overland routes to help Ukraine export its agricultural products, by:

  • providing freight rolling stock, vessels and lorries
  • more effectively using the existing capacity of transport networks and transhipment terminals
  • simplifying and speeding up customs operations and other inspections
  • enabling the storage of goods on EU territory

Since the start of operations in May 2022, around 12.5 million tonnes of Ukraine grain, oilseeds and other products have been exported via the solidarity lanes.

In August 2022, 61% of Ukraine’s food exports (2.6 million tonnes) were transported via the lanes.

Read also:

United Nations, Turkey & Ukraine to press with Black Sea grain deal

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