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Delegates from all over the world are expected to descend on Gauteng in June for the first Global Conference of the United Nations on the 10-Year Framework Programme on Sustainable Food Systems (SFS), which will be hosted by the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti). The theme of the conference is Tackling the Food and Nutrition Challenge through Multi-Stakeholder Action – Adopting a Food System Approach.
According to the Minister of Trade and Industry, Dr Rob Davies, the conference will provide a platform for the sharing of information and knowledge among key stakeholders from across the globe, with the aim of creating new synergies and exploring opportunities for collective action on food system transformation.
“The conference is rooted in two of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. They are Goal 2: Zero Hunger, which is about ending hunger, achieving food security and improving nutrition and promoting sustainable agriculture and Goal 12: Responsible Consumption and Production which is about ensuring sustainable consumption and production patterns. However, the conference is intended to foster joined-up collective action that will go far beyond these two goals due to the transversal nature of our food systems,” says Minister Davies.
He adds that the conference will include a regional segment focusing on issues related to sustainable food systems that are of particular importance to the African context.
“All regions and countries on our planet experience a diverse range of challenges in their food systems such as detrimental climate change impacts, environmental degradation, food insecurity and malnutrition. Nonetheless, a growing number of applicable solutions have been deployed by different actors and at different levels. Even while food system challenges can be highly specific to global, regional and even local contexts, stakeholders from across all sectors and regions can greatly benefit from learning from each other’s experiences,” says Minister Davies.
The conference will also provide a platform for SFS Programme members to present their contributions towards the implementation of the programme. They will also get an opportunity to liaise with each other and strengthen synergies and collaboration.
“In addition, the conference will contribute in raising awareness on the SFS Programme to countries and organisations that are not yet partners of the Programme. This will assist in increasing its membership base, in particular in the Africa region. It will also accelerate the shift towards more sustainable food systems,” emphasises Minister Davies.
The Sustainable Food Systems (SFS) Programme is one of six thematic programmes of the 10-Year Framework Programmes on Sustainable Consumption and Production (10YFP). The programme was launched in October 2015, based on preparatory work by Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).
The 10YFP is a global framework of action that aims to promote national, regional and international cooperation that accelerates the shift towards sustainable consumption and production (SCP) in developed and developing countries. The framework was adopted by the Heads of State at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio in 2012.
Issued by Department of Trade and Industry