Ladies and Gentlemen
I, as FAO DG welcome all participants, both present at FAO Headquarters in Rome and attending virtually,
to the UN Food Systems Pre-Summit hosted by the UNSG and the government of Italy!
This Pre-Summit is a critical moment for our cooperation on the transformation of the world’s
It is a unique time to recharge and re-sail as we come together during the global crisis,
after many months of intense and fruitful consultations.
We discussed the root causes of the crises;
what is needed on the ground and what has built ownership of all players;
what it takes to deliver the desired results; and
which bold innovative solutions are required.
The next three days are dedicated to continuing this inclusive dialogue, and
to laying the foundation of a concrete plan for a better future that we desire to build.
We must use this opportunity wisely and strategically.
The world is not on track to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals,
The number of hungry people has reached 811 million in 2020.
And unless we take urgent and efficient action, 660 million people will go hungry by 2030!
We have to transform our agri-food systems more holistically and locally!
Ladies and Gentlemen,
The dialogues held by our Members have played a key role in identifying national pathways to more efficient, inclusive, resilient and sustainable agri-food systems.
They have proposed game-changing solutions, innovative ideas and concrete actions to be implemented in the coming years.
On 8 July, FAO hosted the Science Days, facilitated by the Summit’s Scientific Group, in preparation for this Pre-Summit and the Summit.
FAO had also been leading with the Science Group a modelling framework for a comprehensive assessment of the six individual interventions being proposed by the UN Food Systems Summit.
The assessment of the modelling work will facilitate an understanding of the interventions’ impacts on reducing chronic hunger and access to healthy diets.
It will also shed light on the ecological effects of agri-food systems,
in terms of greenhouse gas emissions and the use of land, water, energy and chemical inputs.
We need to join our synergistical efforts and work together!
Strategic and inclusive partnerships and broad collaboration are imperative for this ambitious and transformative agenda!
Transforming our agri-food systems is a unique opportunity to achieve rapid results at scale with national priority, while ensuring green recovery.
We need agri-food systems that can provide access to food, to healthy diets, and reduce hunger, poverty and inequality.
We have ONLY nine harvests to build forward better, implement and deliver on the ground and prove our commitment.
The new, innovative and efficient FAO is fully contributing to this historic challenge!
Through its platforms and initiatives, its extensive network in the field and its focus on big data and digital applications.
We have been supporting the preparations for the Summit;
and we will take the lead in coordinating follow-up actions in line with our mandate, and
in close coordination with Members, the UN Family, the private sector, institutions and other key players.
With the new Strategic Framework for the next decade, endorsed by the FAO Ministerial Conference in June,
FAO will support the 2030 Agenda through the transformation to MORE efficient, inclusive, resilient and sustainable agri-food systems,
for better production, better nutrition, a better environment, and a better life, leaving no one behind!
FAO is committed and ready to support Members and partners throughout the process, and
to build strong coalitions by the Hand in Hand Initiative around transformative agendas.
Let’s join our efforts and walk the talk, together!
Let’s rise up to the historic challenges of our generation!
I wish you a successful UN Food Systems Pre-Summit!
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