23 October 2018
CFS 45 Expresses “Deepest Concern” About Rising Hunger, Decides to Develop Guidelines on Food Systems and Nutrition
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Several CFS members stated that the current trends in hunger and malnutrition are unacceptable, and the Committee called on all stakeholders to take measures to reverse these trends.

The Committee endorsed Terms of Reference for the development of 'Voluntary Guidelines on Food Systems and Nutrition' for consideration by CFS 47 in 2020.

CFS also requested its High-level Panel of Experts to prepare a report titled 'Food Security and Nutrition: Building a Global Narrative Towards 2030' to be presented at CFS 46 in 2019.

19 October 2018: The 45th session of the Committee on World Food Security (CFS 45) expressed “its deepest concern about the rising number of food insecure people in the world and the negative trends in hunger and malnutrition.” The Committee also endorsed terms of reference for work on policy guidance on food systems and nutrition.

In addition, the Committee adopted decisions on: implementation of the response to the Evaluation of CFS; critical and emerging issues for food security and nutrition; and CFS’ contribution to the UN High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF) in 2019, among other issues.

The State of Food Security and Nutrition 2018 (SOFI 2018) report finds that in 2017 global hunger and most dimensions of malnutrition increased for the third year in a row. The main reasons for increasing hunger are conflicts and the impacts of climate change, often reinforcing each other. These results prompted high-level speakers and CFS members to express concern and call for action to reverse these trends. Many stated that the trend in hunger is unacceptable, and called for reinforcing measures to combat food insecurity, such as: strengthening the resilience of rural communities; adopting a humanitarian development perspective; supporting the adoption of scalable technologies; and preventing conflicts.

Delegates also considered the findings of the State of Food and Agriculture Report 2018 (SOFA 2018), which focuses on the causes and impacts of migration. The report argues that migration is an important part of rural development that should be managed for maximum benefits, rather than prevented. CFS 45 delegates discussed: the distinction between forced displacement and migration by choice; cross-border migration; multi-dimensional poverty in rural areas; the future of youth; rural women; and the need for better data to understand migratory flows.

Delegates also took decisions on the following issues:

  • On the response to the Evaluation of CFS, the Committee endorsed a plan of action to implement all remaining accepted recommendations from the Evaluation report that was submitted to CFS 44 in 2017.
  • On critical and emerging issues and the development of a Multi-year Programme of Work (MYPoW), delegates decided to task the CFS High-level Panel of Experts (HLPE) with the preparation of a stocktaking report titled, ‘Food Security and Nutrition: Building a Global Narrative Towards 2030,’ and asked the CFS Bureau to lead further work to prepare the MYPoW for 2020-2023.
  • On food systems and nutrition, delegates endorsed Terms of Reference for the development of ‘Voluntary Guidelines on Food Systems and Nutrition’ for consideration by CFS 47 in 2020.
  • On CFS’ contribution to HLPF 2019, members discussed a set of key messages and concrete recommendations relating to the SDGs to be reviewed in-depth in 2019 (SDGs 4, 8, 10, 13, 16 and 17), and supported updating these messages in the light of the outcomes of CFS 45, and the latest international statistics and trends on food security and nutrition.
  • On a report by the HLPE on ‘Multistakeholder Partnerships to Finance and Improve Food Security and Nutrition in the Framework of The 2030 Agenda,’ delegates suggested that it serve as the starting point for a process on knowledge and lessons-sharing on effective multi-stakeholder partnerships.

CFS convened from 15-19 October 2018, at FAO headquarters in Rome, Italy. The CFS is an inclusive international, intergovernmental and multi-stakeholder platform on food security and nutrition for all. Its membership is open to members of the three Rome-based agencies (RBAs): the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO), the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), and the World Food Programme (WFP). [SDG Knowledge Hub Sources] [IISD RS Coverage of CFS 45] [FAO Press Release on CFS 45 Outcomes] [FAO Press Release on FAO Opening] [CFS 45 Website]

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