SEOUL, South Korea (AP) -- U.N. food agencies says food production in North Korea is down again for a third year in a row.
The World Food Program and the Food and Agriculture Organization say in a joint report Monday that 8.7 million North Koreans will need food assistance in the coming year. That's nearly 40 percent of its population of 23 million.
The report says weather conditions were better in 2008 than in previous years but the country will fall short of cereals and grains -- even with imports and aid.
The impoverished communist country has relied on foreign assistance to feed its people since natural disasters and mismanagement devastated its economy in the mid-1990s.
(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)