World Food Day (October 16th, 2020) is one of the most celebrated days across the globe and brings together governments, non-governmental organizations, business, the media, and the public. The aim of World Food Day is to promote awareness and encourage action for those who suffer from hunger, and the need to ensure healthy foods and diets for all. This effort calls on global solidarity to help all populations, especially the most vulnerable, to make food systems more resilient and robust so they can withstand increasing volatility due to climate shock and deliver affordable and sustainable healthy diets for all and protect livelihoods for food system workers.
Did you know?
- 2 billion people experience moderate or severe food insecurity, meaning they have difficulty in regularly accessing enough nutritious foods
- More than 113 million people across 52 countries experience acute hunger requiring urgent foods, nutrition, and living assistance
- Approximately 14 percent of food produced for human consumption is lost each year before reaching the wholesale market
- A combination of poor diets and sedentary lifestyle have led to soaring obesity rates, not only in developed countries, but also in low-income countries, where hunger and obesity often coexist – no region is exempt
- The impact of malnutrition in all its form – undernutrition, micronutrient deficiencies, as well as overweight and obesity – on the global economy is estimated at 3.5 Trillion (USD) per year
HOW WE ALL CAN HELP SUPPORT SUSTAINABLE FOOD SYSTEMS
CHOOSE HEALTHY AND DIVERSE:
A healthy diet contributes to a healthy life. When we choose to eat diverse foods, we encourage a variety of foods to be produced. Remember, a diverse diet favors biodiversity!
INFLUENCE POSITIVE WILL:
If you use social media, you can get people talking about important events like World Food Day using the official hashtag, #WorldFoodDay and create a buzz for #FoodHeroes. Not online? Word of mouth spreads fast and can be just as effective in your neighborhood!
Anyone can be an ally to food heroes. Look for volunteer opportunities at your local food bank or community kitchen. It’s a great way to be involved in collective action and support those who struggle to access food.
Whenever you can, support food heroes by buying locally grown fresh food, such as from local farmer’s stands or at farmers’ market in your community. In doing so, you are helping smallholder farmers that produced the food, your local economy and you are encouraging crop diversity.
Did you know that you reduce your carbon footprint when you buy produce that is in season? When food is out of season in one part of the world it must be imported and travel a long way before it arrives to your local grocery store or market.
GROW FOOD AT HOME:
If you have a green space at home, access to a garden, or a balcony with space for plant pots, you can learn how to grow your own fruits, vegetables, and herbs. This will teach you a lot about how food is produced and grow your appreciation for all the work that goes into cultivating produce that we buy at markets.
SUPPORT DEVELOPMENT INITIATIVES:
By supporting development initiatives, such as school meals and nutrition programs in your local community, you can raise awareness about the importance of eating well and promote healthy eating through education.
SUPPORT FOOD-RELATED BUSINESSES AND RETAILERS:
Encourage your governmental entities, private sector businesses and decision-makers to invest in sustainable, resilient food systems that provide decent employment, and to develop, adapt and share innovative technologies that transform the way food is produced. Nutritious and sustainable food options need to be enticing, available and accessible.
RESPECT FOOD AND FOOD HEROES:
Food loss and waste can occur throughout the food system, once it arrives at your table – you can play your part! Learning how to store uneaten food properly for another day’s meal is one way to avoid wasting perfectly good food. Respecting food means respecting food sector workers.
There are plenty of other ways to encourage growing, nourishing, and sustaining health foods in our community and country together. When you see someone in need, offer to give them some food and show them how they could grow their own. When hosting people at your home, provide healthy meals and share your recipes! Together we can grow, nourish, and sustain healthy foods and diets.