The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed the world’s fragilities, including the weaknesses of our food systems which exacerbate hunger, obesity, poverty, political instabilities and economic crises. To overcome common and regional challenges, the five UN regional commissions have been working jointly on devising harmonized pathways and proposing game changers that can transform food systems, reverse their current performance and improve their outcomes.
This collaboration resulted in the launch of a joint policy brief entitled “Transforming Food Systems” for the Food Systems Summit, held on 23 September in New York. The Brief highlights the need to enhance regional engagement in sharing lessons learned for a sustainable food systems transformation, leading to inclusive and resilient food systems that participate in ensuring equitable livelihoods for all, and a healthy and sustainable planet.
“ESCWA is seizing the global momentum created by preparations for this Summit, including regional food dialogues and our joint work with sister regional commissions, to actively support regional and national actors to ensure natural resources sustainability, food accessibility and healthy diets for all,” said ESCWA Executive Secretary Rola Dashti.
The Brief pinpoints the challenges faced by the world’s regions based on the outcomes of dialogues organized by the five UN regional commissions in their respective regions (Africa, the Arab region, Asia and the Pacific, Europe and North America, and Latin America and the Caribbean). These dialogues have generated momentum in support of national and independent dialogues and have enabled the identification of issues that require collaboration and partnerships between countries.
The Food Systems Summit marks a milestone to promote immediate action for healthier, more sustainable and inclusive food systems, and to advance progress across all Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).