ROME – The emergency caused by the war in Ukraine is jeopardizing access to food for 2.6 million Italians who need help to eat. This is what emerges from Coldiretti’s analysis during the summit with Minister Stefano Patuanelli in reference to the alert launched by the European Commission with the approval of the Communication “Preserving food security and strengthening the resilience of food” to ensure the availability of food for low-income families. From Brussels comes the invitation to provide food and / or basic material aid to families in difficulty through the European Fund for Aid to the Poor (FEAD), which in Italy helps 2,645,064 people including 538,423 children (from same age or younger than 15), 299,890 elderly, 81,963 homeless (65 or older), 31,846 disabled, according to Coldiretti’s analysis. It is the weakest component of society that is most exposed to food impoverishment caused by high prices but also by the slowdown in the economy and the slowdown in employment. Among the measures suggested by the Commission to mitigate the impact of high food prices on the most vulnerable is the possibility for Member States to apply reduced rates of Value Added Tax (VAT).
In Italy, due to the war and the rise in energy prices, which could have a negative impact on GDP of more than 0.7 points according to Istat, the number of those who are no longer able to guarantee a meal is bound to increase – emphasizes Coldiretti. adequate, which represent the tip of the iceberg of the crisis situation in which an increasing number of people are forced to resort to soup kitchens and much more frequently – underlines Coldiretti – to food parcels, also due to the crisis generated by the pandemic. Against poverty – recalls Coldiretti – solidarity developed which extended from voluntary organizations to companies and individual citizens from the experience of the suspended expenses of the Campagna Amica, thanks to which more than 6 million kilos of fruits were collected. , vegetables, cheeses, cold meats, pasta, canned tomatoes, flour, wine and oil 100% Italian, of high quality and at zero kilometers, donated to the most needy.
“To stem this situation, however, a decisive intervention by the public administration is also necessary and it is important to open a first call on March 21 for 100% Italian homogenized meat with the 200 million euros of funds from the Ministry of Agriculture to buy Quality staple foods made in Italy to be delivered to families in difficulty, “says the president of Coldiretti Ettore Prandini, stressing that” we must also speed up the presentation of other appeals for aid to the poor with the resources allocated to buy food and drink to distribute to the new poor”.
The list of products – concludes Coldiretti – ranges from baby food to milk, from cured meats to cheeses with designation of origin, from Made in Italy extra virgin to meat, from pasta to rice, from canned tomatoes to fruit juices .