UN: Food shortages persist in 28 countries

Serious food shortages persist in 28 countries worldwide, with Zimbabwe, Swaziland and Lesotho experiencing one of their worst harvests ever, a UN agency said Tuesday. The three African countries have suffered from prolonged dry spells and erratic rainfall, the Rome-based UN Food and Agriculture Organization said. Production of maize, the main staple crop in the three African countries, is estimated to decline this year by about 43 percent in Zimbabwe, 51 percent in Lesotho and 60 percent in Swaziland compared with 2006, the agency said in a report.