Dr QU Dongyu, FAO Director-General welcomed Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi at FAO today for opening ceremony of the #UNFSS2021. He thanked for his & Italy’s long-standing partnership with FAO & continued commitment to addressing the urgent challenge of sustainable agri-#FoodSystems transformation.
Excellencies, Dear Professor Draghi, president of the Council of Ministers,
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!
We are at a critical moment in time.
Before the pandemic, we already knew that we were off track,
to reducing levels of hunger and malnutrition, and
to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.
The number of hungry people had started to rise following decades of progress.
Three billion people did not have access to the minimum cost healthy diets.
Our agri-food systems are not delivering properly, and
in many parts of the world these systems were not efficient, inclusive and sustainable.
The pandemic aggravated the situation, worsening food insecurity, intensifying inequalities and jeopardizing progress made in the past decades.
The historic task we are facing is clear.
Defining a holistic, coordinated approach to
• transform our agri-food systems;
• turn the tide, and
• accelerate progress towards the SDGs, especially SDG’s 1,2 and 10.
To achieve this ambitious transformation; we need to change policies, mind-sets, and business models.
At FAO, we have implemented a series of fundamental transformative actions, over the past two years, to drive this change;
for an innovative, efficient and inclusive Organization that is fit for purpose.
Our new Strategic Framework for the next decade, endorsed last month by the FAO Conference;
focuses on the transformation to MORE efficient, inclusive, resilient and sustainable
for better production, better nutrition, a better environment and a better life, leaving no one behind.
Our new Strategy for Private Sector Engagement elevates our work with the sector for the benefit of our Members.
We are translating our aspiration into concrete action through numerous activities and initiatives.
FAO’s flagship match-making Hand-in-Hand Initiative aims to accelerate agricultural transformation and sustainable rural development to eradicate poverty and end hunger.
Initiatives like the Food Coalition, the Green Cities, the 1 000 Digital villages and the
COVID-19 Response and Recovery Program complement our holistic approach.
Our work is based on various digital platforms combining Big Data and Artificial Intelligence that are accessible to our Members to support decision-making.
We design different packages of solutions for each Member country and for each commodity.
Solutions that include:
• Establishing enabling and coherent policies;
• investing in agri-food systems along the value chain in essential infrastructure;
• promoting R&D and encouraging science and innovation (biotechnology, digital agri-food systems and new green technologies); and
• addressing the rural-urban gaps of inequality by extending broadband networks and digital services.
We will also use systems approaches for building coherent portfolios of policies, investments and legislation that become win-win solutions.
To succeed, comprehensive engagement and cooperation with all stakeholders is key.
FAO continues to build and strengthen joint efforts across sectors, regions and communities with all stakeholders (farmers, with consumers, scientists, entrepreneurs and decision-makers).
And we know how to do it.
Together, in solidarity, effectiveness and determination!
We invite all of you to join us in this historic defining noble mission!
From the people, by people and for the people – towards a bright future for all humankind!
When it comes to the future: The future of agri-food systems belongs to the young people of today!
Shortly after taking office in 2019, I launched the FAO Youth Committee to increase youth engagement and foster their innovative spark.
And they are reaching out to major youth groups from around the world with the launch of the World Food Forum (WFF).
I invite you all to join the WFF, which will be held for the first time from 1 to 6 October 2021.
Let’s support the youth to transform our agri-food systems and to help achieve the SDGs.
We must seize this opportunity to uplift our youth,
to build back better and greener;
taking the world from Zero waste first to Zero hunger final.
This post will expire on Thursday August 26th, 2021 1:07pm