Marking the first international gathering on food security and nutrition since world leaders approved the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the Committee on World Food Security (CFS) commenced today, focusing on ending hunger by 2030.
Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) José Graziano da Silva told the assembled delegates that last month's approval of the 2030 Agenda "brings new momentum to our efforts."
"Now the world has a set date to end hunger, to achieve food security and to end malnutrition in all its forms," said Mr. da Silva. "I do not doubt that we can become the Zero Hunger generation."
The CFS is an intergovernmental body that serves as a forum for the review and follow up of food security and nutrition policies. It also gives the opportunity for participants from civil society and the private sector to have a voice in policy decisions.
"CFS is different. So let's go out there and make this difference," said Chairperson for the CFS Gerda Verburg. "We are running one single race, all together, to goal Zero Hunger."
The four-day meeting will include remarks by International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) President Kanayo F. Nwanze and World Food Programe (WFP) Executive Director Ertharin Cousin, as well as discussions on nutrition policies and initiatives that focus on youth engagement in the global pledge to eradicate hunger.
Former president of Ireland Mary Robinson will give the keynote speech during a session on strengthening global linkages and dialogue between the CFS and other food security and nutrition organizations.
CFS will also discuss water and food security and nutrition based on the report on the subject by the High Level Panel of Experts on Food Security and Nutrition.
Discussions are also expected to approve the Framework for Action for Food Security and Nutrition in Protracted Crises, a voluntary agreement which seeks to ensure that humanitarian and development efforts are integrated in the increasing number of areas undergoing protracted crises, with a special focus on the nutritional needs of infants and the most vulnerable people.
Mr. da Silva congratulated CFS delegates for what he called a "major achievement in policy convergence" on a complex subject, noting that FAO is already putting the Framework's principles into practice.