Seven Actions to Limit the Impact of War in Ukraine on Food Security

May 05, 2022
  • Description

2021 and 2022 have experienced sharply rising and increasingly volatile food prices. Even before the outbreak of the war in Ukraine, FAO's international food price index had already reached an all-time high. Wheat prices have been highly volatile for more than six months, spiking with the invasion of Ukraine, as shown by IFPRI's excessive food price variability index. With steep declines in exports from Ukraine and Russia, global wheat shortages are expected to occur soon, likely intensifying the crisis. A major reduction in chemical fertilizer exports could devastate not only upcoming harvests of wheat, but also those of other grains. In 2020, Russia provided 14 percent of globally traded supplies of nitrogenous fertilizers, 11 percent of phosphorous-based fertilizers, and, together with Belarus, 41 percent of potash-based fertilizers (Hebebrand and Laborde 2022). Combined, these factors are putting the food and nutrition security of millions of people at risk.

CGIAR researchers have conducted comprehensive analyses to identify seven priority actions that could be considered by policymakers and other key decisionmakers to mitigate supply and price shocks and to improve resilience to future crises. These analyses draw not only from past crises, such as the 2007–2008 food price crisis, but also an array of groundbreaking research being conducted through CGIAR's new research portfolio.