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Impact of Covid-19 on food security  

The COVID-19 pandemic is threatening the long-cherished food security of India (FSI). It has impacted all four aspects, namely 'availability, access, stability, and utilization' of food.

 The COVID-19 pandemic is threatening the long-cherished food security of India (FSI). It has impacted all four aspects, namely 'availability, access, stability, and utilization' of food.

For a durable FSI, the requirements of these four pillars should be fully met. The pandemic has however had perilous implications for food security, particularly of the poor and most vulnerable. This was demonstrated in more than one way by the singular phenomena of the fragile living of over 100 million migrant workers, who had to walk miles and miles but empty stomachs. 

The availability of food grains does not seem to have been adversely impacted so far. As of March 1, 2020, the country had sufficient buffers of food grains: 58.4 million tons and pulses 3 million tons. However, it is not so for other commodities such as fruits and vegetables, eggs, meat, milk, and sugar that constitutes 78 percent of the total food consumption. Disruption in supply chains and a decline in demand had caused a huge loss of production and income to the farmers, traders, and consumers.

As against other sectors of the economy, agriculture has surely shown more resilience. The country's farmers have successfully harvested winter crops. Even sowing of summer crops has progressed well, despite constraints in timely supplies of inputs at reasonable prices.

Access to food was not fully assured as a result of the decline in incomes and loss of livelihood after the Pandemic COVID-19. It was further impaired by socio-economic inequities. The food supply chain (FSC) was stressed. There were widespread disruptions owing to restricted movements, the ban on transportation, and border sealing. FSCs were exempt from lockdown, but only 6 percent of the total supply chain was organized.

Feeding the Needy.

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