Coronavirus: Food will run out if farmers can't farm, Idris Elba says

Idris Elba has backed a fund set up by the UN's IFAD agency to help support farmers in poorer regions (Photo: Chelsea Lauren/Variety/Shutterstock)
Idris Elba has backed a fund set up by the UN's IFAD agency to help support farmers in poorer regions (Photo: Chelsea Lauren/Variety/Shutterstock)

Actor Idris Elba has called on governments to ensure the world does not experience a food shortage in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The actor, who is now a United Nations Goodwill Ambassador, called on richer countries to help agricultural workers in poorer parts of the globe.

He said a decline in farming in regions such as Africa, Latin America and Asia could have a knock-on effect on food availability in the United Kingdom.

The Luther star told BBC News the coronavirus pandemic is 'all about food': "It is about the basic necessity for human beings, and that will run out if the farmers can't farm."



Elba and his wife Sabrina Dhowre Elba, a model and activist, are now calling on world governments to raise $200m (£161m) to help farm workers in developed countries.

The couple, who were appointed ambassadors for the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), seek to raise the funds to counter the effects of the pandemic on food production, market access and employment.



“The world’s advanced economies are in the midst of this pandemic right now and, of course, they must do everything they can to help their own people,” Elba said in a statement.

“But the fact is, global action is also a matter of self-interest. As long as the pandemic is still raging anywhere, it will pose a threat everywhere.”