HO CHI MINH CITY, Nov. 1 (Xinhua) -- Vietnam had 253,500 households which suffered from food shortages in the first 10 months of this year, up 15.1 percent against the same period last year, the country's Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development said Tuesday.

Specifically, over one million local people suffered from food shortages between January and October, up 14.9 percent.

The between-crop hunger surge was attributed to the prolonged serious drought nationwide, especially in the northern mid-land and mountainous region and the Central Highlands region, and recent floods in the central region, said the ministry.

Vietnam's relevant sectors and localities have so far this year offered hungry households 16,900 tons of food and some 600 million Vietnamese dong (26,900 U.S. dollars).

According to the new poor household criteria applied in the 2016-2020 period, Vietnam currently has a poor household rate of some 10.4 percent. According to the old criteria, the rate is 5.8-6 percent.