I’m hungry. This casual statement is uttered countless times throughout the day by people from all walks of life around the world. For some of these people, this statement reflects a temporary experience that can be addressed in a kitchen full of food or with a visit to a local restaurant. Many others are not so fortunate.
For several decades, we saw progress toward eradicating hunger and food insecurity around the world. This is no longer the case. In fact, we are trending in the opposite direction with hunger and food insecurity soaring at unprecedented levels. Here’s what we know.
Experts say there are numerous factors for the growing prevalence of undernourishment. Among the most dominant are:
Zero Hunger by 2030
The United Nations has set a 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development plan of action for people, planet, and prosperity. The plan states, “We are determined to take the bold and transformative steps which are urgently needed to shift the world onto a sustainable and resilient path.” More specifically, goal 2—end hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition to promote sustainable agriculture—focuses on realizing zero hunger by 2030.
Together We Can Make A Difference
World Food Day is an opportune time to reflect on how our work as a science of food and food innovation community can help realize a world with zero hunger. But, how can we get there? Head on over to our Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter pages to share your thoughts on our World Food Day posts.
Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. “The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World.” 13 July 2020. http://www.fao.org/3/ca9692en/online/ca9692en.html#chapter-executive_summary
United Nations. “Goal 2: Zero Hunger.” https://www.un.org/sustainabledevelopment/hunger/
World Economic Forum. “Global hunger fell for decades, but it's rising again.” 23 July 2020. https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2020/07/global-hunger-rising-food-agriculture-organization-report/
World Food Programme. “COVID-19 will double number of people facing food crises unless swift action is taken.” 21 April, 2020. https://www.wfp.org/news/covid-19-will-double-number-people-facing-food-crises-unless-swift-action-taken
IFT responds to scientific questions to be examined to support the development of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Specifically, “What is the relationship between consumption of dietary patterns with varying amounts of ultra-processed foods and growth, size, body composition, risk of overweight and obesity, and weight loss and maintenance?”
What's on the horizon for the global food system in 2022? IFT’s Science and Policy Initiatives team gives their predictions on five trends that are expected to take shape in the new year.