Charles E. Hanrahan
Senior Specialist in Agricultural Policy
Information Research Specialist
The United States is the world’s major provider of international food aid to low-income developing countries. This report provides data on the U.S. contribution to global food aid as reported by signatories of the International Food Aid Convention (FAC) and compiled by the International Grains Council (IGC), as well as data on U.S. and other donor contributions to the United Nations World Food Program (WFP).
The Food Aid Convention (FAC) is an agreement among donor countries to provide a minimum amount of food aid to low-income developing countries. The food aid commitment agreed to by all FAC signatories in 1999 was approximately 4.9 million metric tons (mmt) annually. The United States pledged to provide 2.5 mmt annually, or 51% of the total annual commitment. A new FAC, renamed the Food Assistance Convention, was negotiated in 2012. The United States ratified the new FAC on September 26, 2012. Commitments under the new convention are pending.
Data from the IGC show that U.S. food aid accounted for 56% of food aid shipments by FAC signatories over the period 1995/1996-2011/2012.
A substantial portion of U.S. food aid is channeled through the WFP. Over the period from 1996 to October 20, 2013, around 43% of donor contributions to the WFP came from the United States.
Date of Report: November 12, 2013
Number of Pages: 14
Order Number: RS21279
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