Year 11 | 22 August 2019 | TO ENTER | TO REGISTER

Fight against hunger and access to primary resources

The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization chief, Jacques Diouf, worries: "Foreign direct investment in agriculture is the only way we are going to eradicate global poverty”. A discussion also on water scarcity and food health

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations leads international efforts to defeat hunger.

It’s a battle who the Word risk to lose, according the speaking of FAO director general Jacques Diouf: “The current economic situation does not make our task easier. We face the challenge now of not only ensuring food for the 973 million who are currently hungry, but also ensuring there is food for nine billion people in 2050. We will need to double global food production by 2050.”

The food crisis pushed another 40 million people into hunger, bringing the global number of undernourished people to 973 million last year.

“To achieve this it is necessary to develop partnership or joint-venture agreements between the countries that have the financial resources and on the others which possess land, water and human resources. Only in this way will it be possible to ensure sustainable agricultural development in the context of more equal international relations - add Diouf - Direct foreign investments in agriculture should allow the creation of jobs, income and food, enabling at the same time friendship among nations.”

But the focus, for the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, is not only fight against hunger but also to turning the tide against water scarcity.

“Global water use has been growing at more than twice the rate of population growth in the last century – tell Jacques Diouf - Water scarcity already affects every continent and more than 40 percent of the people on our planet. By 2025, 1.8 billion people will be living in countries or regions with absolute water scarcity, and two-thirds of the world’s population could be living under water stressed conditions. In order to really understand how serious the problem is we first must take stock of the immense impact water has on our daily lives and our ability to provide for a better future. Lack of access to adequate, safe water limits our ability to produce enough food to eat or earn enough income. It limits our ability to operate industries and provide energy. Without access to water for drinking and proper hygiene it is more difficult to reduce the spread and impact of life-threatening diseases like HIV/AIDS. Every day, 3 800 children die from diseases associated with a lack of safe drinking water and proper sanitation.”

And the food must be health.
“The Codex Alimentarius Commission – continue Diouf - sets international standards for use by governments. Codex standards should be such that the health of consumers is adequately protected, but they should not be overly prescriptive in order not to constitute unnecessary barriers to trade. As an example, the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) System is a food safety management tool recommended by Codex.”

To know better Jacques Diouf
Jacques Diouf (born 1 August 1938) is a Senegalese diploma. Married to Aïssatou Seye in 1963. The Diouf family has five children. He earned a bachelor's of science from the Institut National Agronomique Paris-Grignon, a Master of Science in Tropical Agronomy and Doctor of Philosophy in Social Sciences of the Rural Sector from the Sorbonne. Elected Director-General of FAO on 8 November 1993, before was Ambassador of the Senegalese Permanent Mission to the United Nations.

by Ernesto Vania
02 march 2009, Food & Fun > Knowledge