the VOA Special English Development Report.
United Nations says more than nine hundred million people worldwide do not have
enough to eat. Officials say one hundred million more could go hungry this year
because of the food, fuel and financial crises.
with the situation, the U.N. World Food Program has launched a project to help
small farmers. These farmers are mainly women. Many cannot produce enough food
even to feed and support their own families.
effort is called Purchase for Progress, or P4P. It aims to connect local
farmers with dependable markets. That way, they could get a chance to sell
their surplus at competitive prices. P4P will be tested in as many as
twenty-one countries during the next five years.
biggest contributor to the project is Bill Gates, through the Bill and Melinda
Gates Foundation. Another donor is the Howard Buffett Foundation, led by a son
of American investor Warren Buffett. And the government of Belgium is
supporting the project in a former colony, now the Democratic Republic of
these donors have provided more than seventy-six million dollars for projects
in Africa and Central America.
for Progress will work with United Nations agencies, governments and
nongovernmental organizations to help increase crop production. The World Bank
Group and other partners are to help train farmers in better crop management
and marketing skills.
World Food Program says it expects to buy forty thousand tons of food in the
first year using methods launched by the project. That will be enough to feed
two hundred fifty thousand people.
expected to develop food cooperatives and long-term agreements for buying corn,
wheat and other food crops. About three hundred fifty thousand farmers could be
say the project will change the way the World Food Program buys food in
developing countries. Executive Director Josette Sheeran says this is the first
time her agency will buy a large amount of food from small-scale farmers. The
agency has traditionally bought most of its food from developing countries, but
through larger trading organizations.
that's the VOA Special English Development Report, written by Jerilyn Watson.
Transcripts, MP3s and podcasts of our reports are at voaspecialenglish.com.