"Chronic malnutrition in children under five years of age fell from 13 percent in 1996 to seven percent in 2006, according to a Health Ministry study released in July. And in the northeast, the country’s poorest region, the rate plunged from 22.1 to 5.9 percent.
As a result, the infant mortality rate also dropped in that same 10-year period, from 39 to 22 deaths per 1,000 live births in this country of more than 185 million people.
The downtrend was confirmed by the International Food Policy Research Institute in its 2008 Global Hunger Index (a tool that tracks the state of global hunger and malnutrition), which was published Tuesday Oct. 14, ahead of World Food Day (Oct. 16) and shows similar indicators for Brazil.
Efforts to reduce hunger in Brazil have been stepped up under the leftist administration of President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, who shortly after coming into office in 2003 implemented the Fome Zero (Zero Hunger) Programme, a strategy that encompasses more than 50 different actions, ranging from measures to strengthen family farming and provide school meals, to the Family Grant mechanism, which aids 11 million poor households." (Thanks Marcy)
Good policies make a difference.