Press "Enter" to skip to content

Unicef Report Reveals Striking Child Food Poverty Rates in Thailand and Worldwide

Order Cannabis Online Order Cannabis Online

It’s heart-wrenching to realize that one in ten Thai children under the age of five are grappling with severe food poverty, while on a global scale, a staggering one in four kids face similar hunger-related challenges. This somber revelation comes from a comprehensive new report by the United Nations Children’s Fund (Unicef), aptly titled “The Child Food Poverty: Nutrition Deprivation in Early Childhood”. The report meticulously analyzes the far-reaching impacts and underlying causes of dietary deprivation among young ones in nearly 100 countries.

Kyungsun Kim, Unicef’s Representative for Thailand, poignantly stated, “Poor diets can have lasting effects on children’s physical and mental health. Eating healthy food and getting proper nutrition is essential for their well-being and is a basic right crucial for their survival and growth.”

Of the 440 million children worldwide under five years of age, approximately 181 million are entangled in the dire straits of severe child food poverty. This crisis is exacerbated by factors such as inequity, conflict, and climate crises. Alarmingly, the bulk of these children – 65%, to be precise – are concentrated in just 20 countries, including Afghanistan, Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia, Myanmar, the Philippines, and South Africa.

Children caught in the web of severe food poverty typically have access to no more than two food groups per day. This is a far cry from the recommended minimum of at least five out of eight defined food groups, such as breastmilk, eggs, dairy products, grains, meat, vitamin A-rich fruits and vegetables, and other fruits and vegetables.

The report also divulges a crucial insight: about 84 million children (46% of the 181 million) living in severe child food poverty hail from poor families, while a surprising 97 million children (54%) come from non-poor families. This revelation dismantles the common misconception that household income is the sole determinant of child food poverty. Instead, it highlights how the choice of unhealthy foods and beverages plays a significant role.

Delving into Thailand’s national survey conducted by Unicef and the National Statistical Office in 2022, it becomes clear that child nutrition is a cause for concern. Only 29% of Thai children are exclusively breastfed during the critical first six months. Additionally, the survey unearthed that 13% of children under five were stunted, and 7% were underweight due to prolonged poor nutrition.

The situation is particularly dire among children from poor households, non-Thai families, and those whose mothers have little or no education. At the same time, an alarming trend is surfacing: the rise of obesity in young Thai children. In 2022, a shocking 11% of children under five were obese, compared to 9% in 2019. This worrying trend is primarily attributed to the consumption of food and drinks high in sugar and fat content.

Unicef points to several factors fueling the child food poverty crisis. These include food systems that fail to provide children with nutritious, safe, and accessible options, families’ inability to afford nutritious foods, and parents’ challenges in adopting and sustaining positive child-feeding practices. In many regions, low-cost, nutrient-poor, and unhealthy ultra-processed foods and sugar-sweetened beverages are aggressively marketed to parents and families, becoming the norm for feeding children.

Addressing this crisis requires a collective effort. It’s crucial to overhaul food systems to ensure they deliver nutritious, safe, and accessible options for all children. Concurrently, empowering families and parents with the knowledge and resources to make healthier food choices is imperative. By tackling these issues head-on, we can work towards a future where no child has to suffer from food poverty, ensuring every child’s right to a healthy start in life remains intact.


  1. Anna Smith June 7, 2024

    It’s absolutely heartbreaking to see these statistics. How can we, as a global community, allow so many children to suffer from malnutrition?

    • John June 7, 2024

      The lack of equitable distribution of resources is the main culprit here. Wealthier nations need to step up and provide aid.

      • mark_the_skeptic June 7, 2024

        Are you suggesting that hard-working taxpayers should just foot the bill for foreign aid? This calls for a more sustainable solution.

      • Anna Smith June 7, 2024

        John, you make a good point about aid, but Mark brings up a critical need for sustainability. How do we ensure long-term solutions?

  2. Sara June 7, 2024

    What’s shocking is the number of children from non-poor families suffering from food poverty. Parents need better education on nutrition.

    • James Lee June 7, 2024

      Education is vital but so is access. If unhealthy foods are more accessible and marketed heavily, parents might not have much choice.

      • healthy4life June 7, 2024

        100% agree! Ultra-processed foods and sugary drinks are everywhere and marketed as convenient options.

      • Sara June 7, 2024

        James, you’re right. But improving education can empower parents to make better choices even within limited options.

  3. Ben June 7, 2024

    Why is obesity on the rise in such a poor country? It seems contradictory!

    • Maya June 7, 2024

      Actually, it’s a common paradox. Cheap, unhealthy food is often more accessible than nutritious options.

      • Dr. Patel June 7, 2024

        This is known as the ‘nutrition transition,’ where a society shifts from traditional diets to high-calorie, low-nutrient food.

      • Ben June 7, 2024

        Thanks for the insight, Dr. Patel. It still feels preventable with the right policies in place, don’t you think?

  4. SammyD June 7, 2024

    Efforts need to go beyond just food aid. We need to tackle the root causes like inequity and climate change.

    • Ella Johnson June 7, 2024

      Absolutely! Aid is just a band-aid. Real change comes with addressing systemic issues.

    • greenwarrior42 June 8, 2024

      Don’t forget the impact of climate change on agriculture. We can’t ignore environmental factors!

  5. Olivia June 7, 2024

    Child food poverty is a glaring symptom of deeper societal issues. We need systemic changes, not just ad hoc programs.

  6. alex250 June 7, 2024

    Everyone blames the government, but parents have a role too. They should be more responsible for their kids’ nutrition.

    • Carol Lee June 8, 2024

      It’s easy to say that, but without proper support and resources, how can parents make better choices?

    • Nicole June 8, 2024

      Education and local community initiatives can help bridge that gap.

  7. Mitch W. June 8, 2024

    So what’s the solution? Better food systems or better education? Both seem necessary.

  8. Chris June 8, 2024

    This is a critical issue that needs more attention. We can’t ignore the ethical implications of child food poverty.

  9. grower134 June 8, 2024

    Local farming initiatives could be a game-changer here. Encouraging families to grow their own food can help alleviate some issues.

  10. Kate June 8, 2024

    It’s a shame that in 2023, we’re still fighting something as basic as child hunger. Where are we failing as a society?

    • Fred June 8, 2024

      We fail in prioritizing profits over people. The food industry is driven by profit margins, not public health.

    • Kate June 8, 2024

      Fred, you’re right. The commercial interests often trump the need for healthy, affordable food.

  11. HealthyMomma June 8, 2024

    Thailand’s dual problem of malnutrition and obesity shows why nuanced solutions are necessary. It’s not a one-size-fits-all issue.

  12. Carlos M. June 8, 2024

    Why isn’t there more outrage about this? Every child deserves a fair start in life.

    • nina23 June 8, 2024

      Most people don’t think about it until it hits close to home. Out of sight, out of mind.

    • Chris June 8, 2024

      Exactly. Societal awareness needs boosting for genuine action to follow.

    • Carlos M. June 8, 2024

      So true, Nina and Chris. We need campaigns to raise awareness and mobilize action.

  13. Jen Davis June 8, 2024

    How does cultural perception play into this? Some communities might not emphasize balanced nutrition as much.

  14. Tara89 June 8, 2024

    What role does government policy play in this? Are countries doing enough to address these issues at a legislative level?

    • John June 8, 2024

      Not nearly enough. Policies often lag behind the urgent need for action. There needs to be stricter regulations and more support.

    • Tara89 June 8, 2024

      Agreed. Governments need to be more proactive, especially in regulating food marketing that targets children.

  15. Lily P June 8, 2024

    Maybe we should focus more on community-led solutions. Empowering local communities could make a huge difference.

  16. eco_warrior June 8, 2024

    Climate change will only exacerbate food shortages. We need to take environmental issues seriously to ensure food security.

  17. Order Cannabis Online Order Cannabis Online

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

More from ThailandMore posts in Thailand »