FAO Part­ners with Con­sumer In­ter­na­tional for Zero Hunger

FAO and Con­sumers In­ter­na­tional, a global fed­er­a­tion of con­sumer rights groups, have agreed to in­ten­sify their col­lab­o­ra­tion to help end hunger

Rural & Marketing - - FOOD -

The Food and Agri­cul­ture Or­ga­ni­za­tion of the United Na­tions (FAO) and Con­sumers In­ter­na­tional (CI), a global fed­er­a­tion of con­sumer rights groups, have agreed to in­ten­sify col­lab­o­ra­tion to help end hunger. The agree­ment recog­nises that con­sumers around the world can be a pow­er­ful force for change to­wards more sus­tain­able and eq­ui­table food sys­tems.

Key ar­eas of mu­tual in­ter­est in­clude the right to food, con­sumer pro­tec­tion, nutri­tion and food safety.

The part­ner­ship aims to en­hance Con­sumer In­ter­na­tional's ac­cess to FAO's wealth of knowl­edge and in­for­ma­tion while FAO can work more closely with the net­work of CI's mem­ber or­gan­i­sa­tions who com­mu­ni­cate with and ad­vo­cate for con­sumers.

The part­ner­ship will also help strengthen con­sumer pro­tec­tion from food haz­ards. This in­cludes pro­mot­ing aware­ness among con­sumers on safe food han­dling and of stan­dards for food pro­cess­ing along the value chain. The two or­gan­i­sa­tions also aim to pro­mote healthy nu­tri­tional habits and raise aware­ness on sus­tain­able di­ets.

"FAO is pleased to step up our col­lab­o­ra­tion with Con­sumers In­ter­na­tional be­cause con­sumers are a vi­tal part of the Zero Hunger equa­tion. Con­sumer de­mand can be a pow­er­ful force in shap­ing bet­ter food sup­ply sys­tems for all," said FAO's Di­rec­tor-Gen­eral José Graziano da Silva at dur­ing sign­ing agree­ment at Rome.

"To­gether, we can pool FAO's knowl­edge and in­for­ma­tion with our global net­works to get con­sumers to un­der­stand the need for change and to act. If we har­ness that power and help chan­nel it be­hind the work of FAO to end hunger and we will see real change," said Con­sumers In­ter­na­tional's Di­rec­tor-Gen­eral Amanda Long.

Con­sumer power can drive change

Con­sumers In­ter­na­tional rep­re­sents more than 240 con­sumer rights groups in 120 coun­tries. It was founded in 1960 and it works to en­sure that con­sumer voices, needs and per­spec­tives are recog­nised in pol­icy de­bates, such as those con­vened by FAO with Mem­ber States.

As part of its mis­sion to sup­port coun­tries to achieve the Global Goal of Zero Hunger, FAO helps build safe and sus­tain­able food sys­tems and ad­vo­cates for the right to food for all. FAO is also home to the Codex Ali­men­ta­r­ius - the body that sets in­ter­na­tion­ally recog­nised stan­dards for food pro­duc­tion and safety.

Track record of work­ing to­gether

In com­ing months, CI will par­tic­i­pate in sev­eral na­tional and re­gional di­a­logues on is­sues such as nu­tri­tional food sys­tems which will help coun­tries for­mu­late and im­ple­ment plans to achieve Zero Hunger.

In Latin Amer­ica and the Caribbean, FAO and CI are al­ready col­lab­o­rat­ing suc­cess­fully. In the re­gion, CI and its mem­ber groups are ad­vo­cat­ing for and sup­port­ing the development of pub­lic poli­cies to im­prove ac­cess to healthy food and op­ti­mis­ing nutri­tion in­for­ma­tion. CI has made valu­able con­tri­bu­tions to dis­cus­sions con­vened by FAO at the re­gional level and brought in­sights from the con­sumer per­spec­tive.

Amanda Long (L), DG, Con­sumers In­ter­na­tional and José Graziano da Silva, DG, FAO sign­ing MoU in Rome

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