Despite a bumper harvest in America, 1946 was a year in which many countries in Europe and Asia were experiencing critical food shortages. A mixture of powerful images and striking reconstructions - from grasshopper plagues in Sardinia to Greek surgeons demanding pay in food before operating - form the dramatic backdrop to this account of the vital work of the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration in Europe and the Far East.
Founded in 1943, and incorporated into the United Nations in 1945, UNRAA - the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration - was an international body dedicated to relieving the effects of famine caused by the Second World War. As this March of Time film demonstrates, the organisation was predominantly funded by the USA, with Canada and Great Britain also making large contributions, which, in the UK’s case, meant tightening an already strict food rationing policy. The film provides a brief account of UNRAA’s structure but its main focus is on the logistical process of supplying food and raw materials to affected countries. The film ends on a note of uncertainty as UNRAA prepares to disband.