Knowledge for better food systems

Showing results for: Food security and nutrition

In 1996, the World Food Summit stated that food security ‘exists when all people, at all times, have physical and economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food to meet their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life.’ This definition encompasses four key elements: 1) the physical availability of food, 2) the legal, political, economic and social arrangements which assure access to food, 3) the ability to utilise food through adequate diet, clean water, sanitation and health care to reach a state of nutritional well-being, and 4) the stability of all these factors across time. Today, just under 800 million people are undernourished. Compounding this problem, changing dietary patterns (sometimes referred to as the ‘nutrition transition’) brought on by the processes of globalisation mean that, obesity is also now a growing problem, and many developing and emerging countries now find themselves presented with a ‘double burden’ of poor nutrition. Over 2 billion people worldwide are now overweight or obese and most of these are to be found in middle and low income countries simply because their populations are so great. Overlapping with these numbers some 2 billion people suffer from micronutrient deficiencies (most commonly of iron, vitamin A and iodine) which causes physical and cognitive problems, particularly in children and women of childbearing age.

16 May 2017

The website resourcetrade.earth developed by Chatham House enables users to explore the dynamics of international trade in natural resources (including food and agricultural commodities), the sustainability implications of such trade, and the related interdependencies that emerge between importing and exporting countries and regions.

25 April 2017

Being the public voice of over 180 member organisations across nearly 90 countries, La Vía Campesina, the global peasant movement, has planted itself firmly on the international scene. This book explores the internationalisation of the movement, with a specific focus on the engagement of peasants in the processes of the Committee on World Food Security (CFS).

25 April 2017

The UNSCN Discussion Paper  “By 2030, end all forms of malnutrition and leave no one behind” aims to show the centrality of nutrition in the current sustainable development agenda.

12 April 2017

This report by the FAO aims to equip policymakers in ministries of agriculture and rural development, development partners and others with the tools they need to design nutrition-sensitive food and agriculture policies and programmes.

Photo: Connie, polyculture, Flickr, Creative Commons License 2.0 generic.
12 April 2017

This paper, taken from an inaugural edition on planetary health in the Lancet, analyses global food and nutrient production and diversity by farm size, providing evidence on how smallholder farmers contribute to the quantity and quality of our global food supply and discussing the structural impacts of agriculture on nutrient availability.

4 April 2017

This blog-post/commentary on food policy and Brexit is written by Terry Marsden, Director of the Sustainable Places Research Institute and Kevin Morgan, Professor of Government and Development, both at Cardiff University.

4 April 2017

This report from IIED looks at when and how social learning-oriented approaches contribute to better and more sustainable development outcomes, focusing specifically on food security and climate change.

Photo: Oxfam East Africa, Sustainable food for all, Flickr, Creative Commons License 2.0 generic.
4 April 2017

This paper summarises the evidence on the role that agriculture plays in improving nutrition, how food systems are changing rapidly due to globalization, trade liberalization, and urbanization, and the implications for nutrition globally.

4 April 2017

In the latest in a series of articles seeking to shake up the conversation about food production and its trade-offs (see for example our previous summary of Elena Bennett’s Nature commentary, and the subsequent FCRN discussion forum), this opinion piece seeks to shift the focus of the discourse away from food production as the goal of agriculture, and towards food security, incorporating biodiversity outcomes.

29 March 2017

This report from the International Food Policy Research Institute IFPRI provides a comprehensive overview of major food policy developments and events. Leading researchers, policy makers, and practitioners review what happened in food policy, and why, in 2016 and look forward to 2017. This year’s report has a special focus on the challenges and opportunities created by rapid urbanization, especially in low- and middle-income countries, for food security and nutrition.

Photo: jbloom, plate scraping, Flickr, Creative Commons License 2.0 Generic.
29 March 2017

This paper looks at how we can achieve greater food and nutrition security in a sustainable manner by reducing waste and it also analyses how losses impact overall food system efficiency.  It quantifies the food wasted throughout the food chain (10 stages) from primary production to human food consumption and also looks at the impact of livestock production on both food system biomass efficiency and feed crop losses. The paper defines wasted food energy of livestock production in terms of its poor efficiency in feed conversion ratios (ie. only some of the feed livestock consume end up as meat and dairy, with the rest loss via respiration, dung and urine). 

 
Creative commons licence 2.0, Vanessa lollipop Flickr "Borough Market"
24 March 2017

From FCRN member Professor Amir Sharif from Brunel University, we are including this recent article in The European Financial Review entitled “Food Security In The UK: A Post-Brexit View”. In it the authors discuss what factors the UK needs to consider post-Brexit in order to ensure consistent, safe and secure food production, supply and consumption.

You can read the article here (requires free registration).

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