A global information and early warning system on food and agriculture was set up some years ago but the two main elements of the system of food security, namely food reserves and a better deal for developing countries in agricultural trade, have made very little progress. The most serious lag has been that concerning the system of food security reserves. Developed countries which either control the bulk of surplus grains, or can afford to pay for a system of food security, do not need it for themselves. The developing countries, which need such a system, cannot afford the full costs of an adequate system nor the possibility for effective participation in the control and management of the food reserves. As a result, despite several good harvests, the world is without a dependable system of food security.
As a result of declining food security, the number of undernourished people in Africa nearly doubled from 100 million in the late 1960s to nearly 200 million in 1995.