silent hunger
(SYE.lunt hung.gur) n. Hunger caused by extreme poverty rather than a man-made or natural disaster. Also called hidden hunger.

Example Citation:
After the failure of the much-hyped 'golden rice', comes another 'magic bullet' from the biotechnology industry: A protein-rich genetically modified potato - to combat malnutrition in India. It looks as if agricultural scientists have suddenly woken up to the lingering crisis on the nutritional front and are desperately looking for technological remedies to fight the scourge of mankind — silent hunger.
—Devinder Sharma, "GM potato: magic bullet or mere hype?",Business Line, February 12, 2003

Earliest Citation:
We need to commit ourselves. We're talking about the silent hunger associated with extreme poverty, not the disaster-related hunger that comes in places like Somalia and Bosnia. And that should not be accepted. It is unconscionable that a billion people around the world today are still going hungry.
—Ismail Serageldin, "Experts Discuss World Hunger on Eve of Int'l Conference," CNN, November 29, 1993

Notes:
Also:

[Danny] Glover gets his chance to appear in a socially significant project March 20 in the two-hour NBC-TV movie 'A Place at the Table,' in which he co-stars with Susan Dey and Lukas Haas, the youngster with whom he worked in 'Witness.'

He portrays a school teacher dealing with the hunger problem among impoverished youngsters.

'It's the subtle, silent hunger of thousands of kids in this country,' Glover said. 'At one time the government funded free lunch and breakfast programs. Now it doesn't and the effects have been drastic. Hunger affects the ability of children to learn. It causes behavioral problems.
—Vernon Scott, "Black actor avoids stereotyping," UPI, March 10, 1988

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