MILAN – The U.N. food agency says water scarcity has caused a drop in North Korea's food production for the first time since 2010, threatening to worsen food security in the reclusive nation.
The Rome-based Food and Agriculture Organization said Wednesday that food production last year was estimated at 5.4 million tons, down 9 percent from 5.9 million tons in 2014. That includes production of cereals, soybeans and potatoes.
As a result, the country will need to import 694,000 tons of food — just 300,000 tons of which is expected to be covered by government imports. FAO said that leaves the widest gap since 2011-2012.
It said food security is expected to deteriorate from last year "when most households were already estimated to have poor or borderline food consumption levels."