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Governo Italiano

World Food Day: war on waste for 'Zero hunger'



World Food Day: war on waste for 'Zero hunger'

'Zero hunger' is the global goal to abolish malnutrition by 2030. It is an ambitious goal that we can achieve all together. In this effort, “it is urgent to put in place concrete actions” said the Deputy Foreign Minister, Emanuela Del Re, at the international conference organised at the Farnesina to celebrate World Food Day. The Deputy Minister called on “all the players involved to act in synergy and in a coordinated effort to achieve this goal and to restore the dignity of malnourished populations”. The path is uphill because figures tell us that 821 million people suffered from hunger in 2017, 60% of whom were women. And despite the fact that the world produces sufficient food to feed everybody, one person out of nine suffers from hunger. More than half of the people who do not have access to food live in war-stricken Countries. Almost 70% of the poorest populations live in rural areas and work in agriculture. Hunger kills more than AIDS and tuberculosis and 45% of infant deaths are due to under-nourishment while 151 million children under 5 suffer from rickets. Conversely, 1.9 billion people, more than one quarter of the world’s population, are overweight. Obesity affects 672 million people and 3.4 million people die because of problems connected to obesity every year. In addition, more than one third of the food produced in the world is lost or wasted, accounting for a cost of 680 billion in industrialised Countries and of 310 billion in developing countries. And this is not all: 6% of greenhouse gases is produced by the food wastes disposed of in landfills, thus creating a double damage: environmental and humanitarian. The principal causes of food insecurity are conflicts and extreme weather phenomena, which combine to boost migration. According to the FAO, these factors, combined to the economic slowdown and the increase of overweight and obesity, have annulled over a decade of progress in the struggle against hunger. However, there are signs of hope. For example, thanks to the actions of the FAO in the Democratic Republic of Congo, men and women in the province of Tshopo got together to discuss about fishing, an activity traditionally only carried out by men. After deciding to open the sector to women there was an increase in the amount of fish caught and income, to the benefit of the whole community. In Gambia and Senegal, the FAO’s “A million tanks” rainwater collection and storage programme succeeded to improve agricultural production and the nutrition of families, thus enhancing their resilience. And, to keep the focus closer to home, the world-famous Italian chef and testimonial of IFAD (International Fund for Agricultural Development), Carlo Cracco, launched an appeal to learn not to waste food in our opulent kitchens. He said: “Buying less is good for our wallets but also for the problem of hunger in the world: we learn not to be attracted by ‘coloured’ things in supermarkets that then remain on the shelves of our refrigerators until they are thrown out. Let’s go back to recycling leftovers; this too means knowing how to cook.”     

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