World Food Day, 10/16/2020

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 Each year on October 16, advocacy and faith-based organizations recognize World Food Day, established by the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in 1979. Themes for the day in the past have been:

  • 2016 – “Climate is changing. Food and agriculture must too.”
  • 2017 – Examining “the link between food security, rural development and migration.”
  • 2018 – Zero Hunger: Our Actions are our Future.
  • 2019 – “Healthy Diets for a Zero Hunger World.”

This year’s theme is “Grow, nourish, sustain. Together. Our actions are our future.” http://www.fao.org/world-food-day

 Here are some suggestions from the FAO for taking action to achieve the 2020 goal of “grow, nourish, sustain”:

  • Choose local. Buy as much as you can from local farmers, not “big box” stores. 
  • Choose seasonal. Buying produce in season results in less carbon emissions due to businesses’ trucking in food from overseas.
  • Choose healthy and diverse. “A healthy diet contributes to a healthy life. When we choose to eat diverse foods, we encourage a variety of foods to be produced. This is not only healthier for our bodies, but heathier for soils and our environment because a diverse diet favors biodiversity!” 
  • Grow your own. 

According to the World Hunger organization, there are 815 million hungry people in the world today.htps://www.worldhunger.org/world-hunger-and-poverty-facts-and-statistics/

The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change links climate change with global hunger. https://unfccc.int/ 

Results of climate change, such as extreme weather events, land degradation and desertification, water scarcity and rising sea levels, undermine global efforts to eradicate hunger. Crop failure and famine, drought and natural disasters, caused by climate change, are among the leading causes of migration.

One way of tackling the global migration and refugee crisis is by working toward a more just food system. This is a biblical commandment:

“When you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not reap to the very edges of your field, or gather the gleanings of your harvest. You shall not strip your vineyard bare, or gather the fallen grapes of your vineyard; you shall leave them for the poor and the alien: I am the Lord your God.”

Leviticus 19:9-10

WVIRM calls on people of faith and those who believe in moral accountability to work now and in the future for a just food system.