5.2 million Filipino families experienced hunger once in past 3 months— SWS

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, July 21) — Around 20.9 percent of Filipino families reported having experienced hunger at least once in the past three months, a Social Weather Stations survey showed.

The SWS National Mobile Survey conducted from July 3 to 6 revealed that an estimated 5.2 million families have experienced involuntary hunger, or hunger that is due to the lack of food in their households, amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

This is the highest hunger rate since September 2014, when incidence of hunger reached 22.0 percent of polled households.

The 20.9 percent rate in early July represented Moderate to Severe Hunger.

SWS defines Moderate Hunger as “those who experienced hunger only once or a few times” in the last three months, while those who have experienced Severe Hunger, have gone through it “often or always.”

The hunger rate in July climbed by 4.2 points from 16.7 percent in May 2020, and by 12.1 points from 8.8 percent in December 2019, the survey said.

The Visayas islands posted the highest hunger rate with an estimated 27.2 percent or 1.3 million families suffering from the lack of food, while Mindanao had 24.2 percent, and Luzon with 17.8 percent.

Recently, a United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization report revealed that the country recorded the most number of food insecure people in Southeast Asia over 2017 to 2019.

READ: 59M Filipinos experienced 'food insecurity,' highest in Southeast Asia — UN report

The survey also showed that hunger is high among households of non-elementary graduate respondents.

“Hunger is always higher, the lower the socio-economic status (SES), as proxied by the education of the respondent,” the survey said.