Russia ranked No. 44 in a recent survey of the best — and worst — places to eat among 125 of the world's countries: There is plenty of food to go around, but the quality and prices leave something to be desired.
The survey by Oxfam International — a UK-based global network fighting hunger and poverty — rated the countries based on food availability, prices, quality and the health outcomes of people's diets.
The Netherlands offers the best meals of all, according to the survey released earlier this month. The top 10 places to eat in the world also include France, Switzerland, Denmark, Sweden, Austria, Belgium, Ireland, Italy and Portugal.
The worst place to eat is Chad. The African country has some of highest children's malnutrition rates in the world, and the food is often prepared in unsanitary conditions and without access to clean drinking water.
Other places that culinary tourists might like to avoid are Angola, Ethiopia, Madagascar, Yemen, Niger, Burundi, Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Sierra Leone. Along with Chad, they made up the world's 10 worst places to dine — or have lunch or breakfast, for that matter.
Britain, the U.S and Canada ranked 13th, 21st and 25th, respectively — largely because of those countries' struggles with obesity, diabetes and unhealthy eating habits.
Among the former Soviet republics, Ukraine came in 33rd and Belarus ranked 57th. Of the Caucasus regions, renowned among many Russians for their cuisine, Armenia came in 57th, and Azerbaijan ranked 91st, mostly set back by doubts about its sanitary standards and its high food prices. Georgia was not included in the rating.
Russia came in 44th, scoring fairly high on the availability of food, with few people going hungry. But it lost points for food quality, fairly high levels of diabetes and obesity, and steep prices.