Policy guidance for food systems transformation

The Committee on World Food Security (CFS) is the most inclusive international and intergovernmental platform for all stakeholders to work together in a coordinated way to ensure food security and nutrition for all. The current global outbreak of Coronavirus (COVID-19) has disrupted food systems around the world and this has showed us the urgency of transforming our food systems into resilient, sustainable food systems.

The work of the CFS is thus now more relevant than ever: the Voluntary Guidelines on Food Systems for Nutrition (VGFSyN) and the Policy Recommendations on Agroecological and Other Innovative Approaches, to be adopted at CFS 47, represent a great opportunity for governments and other relevant stakeholders to reaffirm their commitments to promote sustainable food systems that produce sustainable healthy diets for all.

These policy documents are particularly important as they also constitute CFS’s main contribution to the preparation for, and implementation of, the United Nations’ Secretary General’s Food Systems Summit planned in 2021 and to the UN Decade of Action on Nutrition (2016-2025).

These two CFS products should not be seen as separate tools: the synergies are multiple and they can benefit from each other if stakeholders work in a coherent and consistent way. The policy recommendations on Agroecological and Other Innovative Approaches for example, should provide indications for governments and other stakeholders on how to achieve food systems transformation for better nutrition in a sustainable way, through agroecology and other innovative practices, thus supporting the CFS Voluntary Guidelines on Food Systems for Nutrition. Food systems are dynamic, diverse and highly context specific and the VGFSyN stress the importance of sustainable and context specific interventions as well as protecting and promoting traditional diets and indigenous knowledge. These elements are vital to ensuring positive and sustainable impacts on nutrition, equity and environment and to support the transition towards more resilient food systems.

©FAO/Giuseppe Carotenuto

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