Millions of people around the world face hunger every day, and unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic is expected to make the issue of food security even worse.
Satellites are helping to alleviate the situation by providing crucial information to monitor crop growth and harvesting from space.
A recent report from the World Food Programme forecasts that the COVID-19 pandemic could push over 130 million additional people into chronic hunger by the end of 2020. The pandemic has caused numerous problems and uncertainties along the food supply chain such as limited labour, transport, cross-border trade and the availability of produce.
It is important to understand how the pandemic is disrupting the growth and harvest of staple crops as well as the food supply chain, which can be affected by various factors such as shortages of fertiliser, a lack of labour and issues associated with national export policies. These limitations create uncertainty in food markets and, therefore, the availability of food in the future.
Satellite monitoring tools are useful as they can provide information on planting and harvesting for key food and agriculture commodities.
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Image via European Space Agency