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Apr 2, 2012

FY 2012 USDA Food Aid To Benefit 9.7 Million Globally, Cost US$373.7 Million

On 2 April 2012 the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced that international food assistance in fiscal year (FY) 2012 will benefit more than 9.7 million people worldwide under USDA’s Food for Progress and McGovern-Dole International Food for Education and Child Nutrition programs. Both of these programs are administered by USDA's Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS). They are part of Feed the Future, President Obama's global hunger and food security initiative that was launched following the 2009 L'Aquila World Summit on Food Security. This is aimed at supporting the Millennium Development Goal of halving the proportion of people living in extreme poverty and suffering from hunger by 2015.

Under the Food for Progress and the McGovern-Dole International Food for Education and Child Nutrition programs, the USDA purchases U.S. commodities and donates them to government agencies and private aid organizations in certain target countries. Commodities include U.S.-produced corn-soy blend, cornmeal, dehydrated potato flakes, dried beans, lentils, rice, sorghum, soy oil, soybeans, soybean meal, vegetable oil and wheat.

Food for Progress (FFP) was authorized by the Food for Progress Act of 1985. FFP recipients sell the commodities and use these funds to support free enterprise in the agricultural sector. It is estimated that in FY 2012, this program will provide $158 million in food aid, which will reach 6.95 million people in nine countries. This includes:


CountryParticipantPotential BeneficiariesEstimated Value*
El SalvadorFINCA International270,000$11,000,000
GuatemalaCounterpart International70,000$7,500,000
HondurasTechnoServe550,000$12,000,000
MaliAga Khan Foundation710,000$24,000,000
MongoliaMercy Corps140,000$6,800,000
MozambiqueLand O'Lakes970,000$22,000,000
NicaraguaTechnoServe270,000$9,500,000
NicaraguaCatholic Relief Services1,490,000$20,300,000
SenegalInternational Relief and Development1,560,000$14,800,000
SenegalShelter for Life20,000$14,800,000
TanzaniaCatholic Relief Services900,000$15,300,000
TOTAL6,950,000$158,000,000

* includes shipping and freight costs


The McGovern-Dole Program targets low-income, food-deficit countries that are committed to universal education. Participants either use or sell the donated U.S. commodities to support education, child development, and food security. It is estimated that in FY 2012 this program will provide an estimated $205.7 million in food aid that will benefit 2.75 million people in fifteen countries. This includes:


CountryParticipantPotential BeneficiariesEstimated Value*
AfghanistanWorld Vision80,000$16,600,000
CambodiaInternational Relief and Development30,000$6,900,000
CameroonCounterpart International120,000$16,400,000
EthiopiaWorld Food Program240,000$26,500,000
HaitiWorld Food Program300,000$8,000,000
HondurasCatholic Relief Services50,000$16,000,000
KenyaWorld Food Program700,000$9,700,000
KyrgyzstanMercy Corps70,000$10,900,000
LaosCatholic Relief Services30,000$12,000,000
LiberiaWorld Food Program340,000$6,400,000
MalawiWorld Food Program340,000$8,300,000
NepalWorld Food Program210,000$6,000,000
MozambiquePlanet Aid70,000$20,000,000
MozambiqueWorld Vision110,000$20,000,000
SenegalCounterpart International30,000$11,200,000
Sierra LeoneCatholic Relief Services30,000$10,800,000
TOTAL2,750,000$205,700,000

* includes shipping and freight costs


For more see:
"USDA 2012 Food Assistance Programs to Benefit Nearly 10 Million Worldwide," USDA Press Release No. 0113.12, 2 April 2012.

Meyer, Bob. "U.S. International Food Assistance to help 9.7 million people this year," Brownfield Ag News, 2 April 2012.

For specifics on the 5 different programs that authorize the U.S. government to distribute food aid see:

USDA, Food Aid

USDA, Food for Progress

About Margaret


CEO and Curator (The Food Museum) | Managing Director and Chief Editor (GR2 Global LLC) | Educator (UCLA PhD) | Researching and writing on global food issues, nutrition and health, sustainability, history (preservation), conservation (natural resources), and design.
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