Assuring that everyone has access to adequate and healthy food produced in an environmentally-friendly way is a global challenge, and responses to that challenge must also be global, agreed participants at an event today organized by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations with the European Parliamentary Alliance against Hunger and Malnutrition.
“We urgently need to do things differently and act holistically to transform our agri-food systems,” said QU Dongyu, FAO Director-General, noting that “the table will need to be set” for up to 10 billion people in 2050. He pointed to the upcoming UN Food Systems Summit 2021 as a timely opportunity “to galvanize momentum, foster dialogue and present game-changing solutions.”
The parliamentarians, eager to participate in the Summit proceedings, invited the Director-General to reflect on how to make it a success.
FAO has been providing technical support to Members that are convening national-level dialogues on how to contribute to the Food Systems Summit, he said, noting that more than 111 countries are also conducting domestic multi-stakeholder dialogues on how to transform their agri-food systems at the country level.
FAO, with funding from the European Union, is also undertaking rapid agri-food systems assessment in 60 countries to help them develop and implement national “road maps” for transformation, he added.
Other speakers at the event included
- David Sassoli, President of the European Parliament, and Members of the European Parliament
- Marlene Mortler,
- Paolo De Castro,
- Soraya Rodríguez Ramos,
- Isabel Carvalhais,
- Francisco Guerreiro and
- Petros Kokkalis.
- Rodrigo de Lapuerta, Director a.i. FAO Liaison Office with the European Union and Belgium,
- Martin Frick, Deputy to the Special Envoy for the UN Food Systems Summit.
- Claire Bury, Deputy Director-General for Health and Food Safety / European Commission
- Carla Montesi, Director at the Directorate General for International Partnerships / European Commission
- Joachim von Braun – president of the Food Systems Summit’s Scientific Group and acclaimed food security expert – gave the keynote speech.