If mean, can lead to starvation (6)
I believe the answer is:
Here is my best explanation:
'starvation' is the definition.
(I've seen this before)
'if mean can' is the wordplay.
'can' is an anagram indicator (I've seen 'canned' mean this (canned can mean drunk)).
'ifmean' with letters rearranged gives 'FAMINE'.
'lead to' is the link.