A famine is a widespread scarcity of food, caused by several factors including crop failure, population unbalance, or government policies. This phenomenon is usually accompanied or followed by regional malnutrition, starvation, epidemic, and increased mortality. Nearly every continent in the world has experienced a period of famine throughout history. Many countries continue to have extreme cases of famine.

Emergency measures in relieving famine primarily include providing deficient micronutrients, such as vitamins and minerals, through fortified sachet powders or directly through supplements. The famine relief model increasingly used by aid groups calls for giving cash or cash vouchers to the hungry to pay local farmers instead of buying food from donor countries, often required by law, as it wastes money on transport costs, but more importantly, it perpetuates the cycle of dependency on foreign imports rather than helping to create real local stability through agricultural abundance. Such independence however does rest upon local conditions of soil, water, temperature and so on.

Long-term measures include investment in modern agriculture techniques, such as fertilizers and irrigation, which largely eradicated hunger in the developed world. World Bank strictures restrict government subsidies for farmers, and increasing use of fertilizers is opposed by some environmental groups because of its unintended consequences: adverse effects on water supplies and habitat.

Read more about Famine:  Characteristics, Causes, History

Other articles related to "famine":

Lakshmeshwar Singh - Public Charity
... Singh spent approximately £300,000 on relief work during the Bihar famine of 1873–74 ... travelers, as part of generating employment for people effected by famine ... of the Raj, and completed an elaborate system of irrigation works, for prevention of famine ...
List Of Memorials To The Great Famine - Ireland
... Strokestown Park Famine Museum Customs House Quays, Dublin ... "Famine", a sculpture by Edward Delaney ... Limerick, The 'Broken Heart' Famine memorial by Maria Pizzuti, Lower Mallow Street ...
Second Reformation - History
... The occasion of the Great Famine (Ireland) was also seized upon by the "new Reformers" ... Quaker and Irish politician Alfred Webb later wrote "Upon the famine arose the wide spread system of proselytism.. ... took the "soup" became known for generations as "soupers" after the Famine many re-converted back to being Roman Catholics and in turn they became known as "jumpers ...
Mary Letitia Martin - Famine
... remaining fortune was destroyed in the potato famine as she attempted to alleviate its effects on her tenants ...
Famine, Affluence, And Morality - Quotations
... or guilty about spending money on new clothes or a new car instead of giving it to famine relief ...

Famous quotes containing the word famine:

    I knew the poor,
    I knew the hideous death they die,
    when famine lays its bleak hand on the door;
    I knew the rich,
    sated with merriment,
    who yet are sad.
    Hilda Doolittle (1886–1961)

    From the war of nature, from famine and death, the most exalted object which we are capable of conceiving, namely, the production of the higher animals, directly follows. There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been breathed into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved.
    Charles Darwin (1809–1882)

    They can rule the world while they can persuade us
    our pain belongs in some order.
    Is death by famine worse than death by suicide,
    than a life of famine and suicide ... ?
    Adrienne Rich (b. 1929)