Today, we celebrate the World Food Day at the Centre on Integrated Rural Development for Asia and the Pacific (CIRDAP). The 16 October is celebrated as “The World Food Day” around the world in honor of the date of the founding of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations in 1945 with the promotion of food security. The theme of 2020, “Grow, Nourish, Sustain. Together – Our Actions are our Future”, underscores the need to immediately and urgently respond to, and recover from, the impact of COVID-19 on our food systems and the billions of people that rely on them[i].

This global pandemic crisis has been a time to reflect on things we truly cherish and our most basic needs. Preserving access to safe and nutritious food is and will continue to be an essential part of the response to the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly for poor and vulnerable communities, who are being severely affected by the pandemic and resulting economic shocks.

Sustainable Development Goal 2: Achieving Zero Hunger – is at the heart of the Agenda 2030 of United Nations. Although enough food is being produced to feed the world’s population, there are still 815 million hungry people in the world. For the first time in history, we have the tools to end hunger, the commitment to achieve it and a definite target[ii].

FAO counts on the support of its five Special Goodwill Ambassadors from five different regions of the world for Zero Hunger to spread the word that our generation can become the Zero Hunger Generation, because we have a real chance to achieve this. All we need is the political will, social awareness and a universal effort.

On behalf of CIRDAP, I call for immediate global attention on food security, waste and loss; and malnutrition, which are linked to poverty. Because, the global pandemic and the disruptions in the food chain and system has caused severe impact on livelihoods of billions of people. While the spread of the coronavirus has seriously disrupted food security and livelihoods for millions of people in this region, we also find ourselves far off-track to meet the Sustainable Development Goals to end malnutrition and poverty. The Zero Hunger goal can only be reached if we unite the efforts of various actors, including governments, international organizations, the private sector, academia and farmers among others, and obtain the support of as many people as possible in the fight against hunger.

CIRDAP looks forward to promoting this burning issue on integrated rural development including food security and nutrition as part of the work plan 2020+ in the years to come.

i. click here

ii. click here