La Via Campesina and URGENCI, jointly with other Social movements, gathered in Rome on November 19-21, 2014, for the Second International Conference on Nutrition (ICN2), where Member States of FAO and WHO are discussing and adopting a framework for action on nutrition. This event, organised jointly by FAO and WHO, is happening 22 years after the first ICN, 22 years in which no improvements have been made by the international community; 22 years in which the private sector has captured nutrition as a business opportunity to provide a never-ending list of “nutrient-enriched” and GMO pseudo-solutions to consumers. Transnational corporations have no place in trade agreements or our food systems!
As movements of small-scale farmers and consumers, LVC and URGENCI feel the need to remind the Member States that the problem of malnutrition is not just a technical issue, but a systemic one. It is not possible to have healthy and culturally appropriate nutrition without food sovereignty. Teikei, the original Japanese CSA movement was founded in the 1970s as Japanese housewives’ answer to the problems caused by industrial heavy metal pollution of their food. These issues, as well as those of land-,water- and ocean grabbing, mono-cropping and pollution from agrochemicals have become much worse in the last 40 years.
As Marciano Da Silva, a member of the movement of small-scale farmers in Brazil says “The people of the world could all be well fed, if peasant agricultural systems were protected by States. Nutrition can not exist without food in all its diversity”
Tianle Chang, of the Beijing Farmers’ Market says that “ …in China, there is an emerging movement of small organic producers working with local consumers to create sustainable food communities together. Initiatives like farmers’ markets and Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) have proved to be good solutions to nutrition while supporting the health of environment and communities.”
The issue of building and defending sustainable local food systems is central for producers and consumers alike. Agroecology combined with alternative food distribution systems and economic change are central to achieving nutrition, the right to food and food sovereignty!
Nutrition should be grouped together with food and jointly covered under the auspices of the CFS (Committee on World Food Security) within the inclusive framework of the CFS. Public Institutions and States’ policy on food and nutrition must also remain separate and independent from all private business interests.
Nutrition is not for profit!
LVC and Urgenci press contacts in Rome:
Judith Hitchman (EN, FR), Advocacy officer, Urgenci International Network +(33)680600391