Asia-Pacific Regional Food Systems Dialogue – a name to motion

10/06/2021 Bangkok, Thailand

Bold new considering and decisive motion will probably be wanted to reshape and re-engineer meals methods in Asia and the Pacific to make them extra responsive, extra dynamic and extra equitable to fulfill the dietary and different wants of essentially the most populous — but most undernourished — area of the world, a specifically convened high-level assembly heard right now. 

The Asia-Pacific Regional Food Systems Dialogue was organized by six United Nations businesses in response to sturdy curiosity from governments and different stakeholders in re-examining how meals is produced, processed and consumed, prompted partly by the COVID-19 pandemic and its associated impacts.  The restoration course of from the coronavirus is seen as the start of that transformation main as much as the 2030 deadline of assembly the Sustainable Development Goals

Without addressing the weaknesses in our meals methods, we can not deal with the broader points 

The Dialogue was opened by Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana, UN Under-Secretary General and Executive Secretary of ESCAP, and Jong-Jin Kim, Assistant Director-General and FAO Regional Representative for Asia and the Pacific.  

They defined that the worldwide pandemic has helped to put naked one thing that was already turning into very clear in recent times – that with out addressing the annoying components that stymy progress towards SGDs 1, 2 and 10 – poverty, starvation and inequality – the world, and this area particularly, can not hope to realize the opposite 14 SDGs.  

Even earlier than the pandemic engulfed the area, Asia and the Pacific was dealing with quite a few challenges to meals and agriculture together with, local weather change, fast urbanization and land degradation, shortage of pure sources corresponding to water, trans-boundary pests and illnesses corresponding to desert locust, Fall Armyworm and African Swine Fever.  

The Asia-Pacific area is subsequently ripe for meals system transformation as quite a few UN flagship studies have famous. Yet, whereas it has been, economically, the quickest rising area on this planet for twenty years, it’s nonetheless house to the most important variety of malnourished folks, and even international locations with rising incomes are fighting a number of burdens of malnutrition. 

The Dialogue was a high-level digital occasion, and was joined by Agnes Kalibata, the Special Envoy of the Secretary-General for the worldwide 2021 UN Food Systems Summit set to happen later this yr in New York. 

She indicated that in preparation for the worldwide UN Food Systems Summit it had turn into clear simply how interconnected the world had turn into, and the way COVID-19 had grown from one nation at a time after which crossed to different international locations whereas local weather change had introduced with it different challenges to meals methods and these wanted to be addressed collectively. This regional dialogue had offered a chance for contributors to speak collectively as a area and to know the inter-connectedness as a area, but in addition to push exterior of the area and find out how to contribute to the world as a complete. 

Asia and the Pacific – a various area with rather a lot to supply the worldwide Summit 

The Asia-Pacific area may be very various. Some international locations have an ageing inhabitants which is lowering the numbers of these concerned in farming and meals manufacturing. Other international locations have massive youth populations, all of whom can not make their dwelling from agriculture

The area can be very economically various, with extremely developed economies alongside a number of the poorest and most meals insecure.  

The Dialogue heard that there exists a wide range of options that may be discovered on this area – policy-based, evidence-based, regenerative, progressive and technological. All are wanted to beat the variety of issues that exist to fulfill the challenges of meals methods transformation. It was agreed that social security nets and alternatives will probably be wanted for reskilling and retraining for individuals who will probably lose out because of transformative change and nobody needs to be left behind.  

The Dialogue agreed that the Summit shouldn’t be a way to an finish, however the starting of a course of, and this regional dialogue was a chance to type an inclusive coalition of companions who would work to re-imagine and re-shape meals methods main as much as the belief of the SDGs and past. 

The Asia-Pacific Regional Food Systems Dialogue was made attainable by a coordinated effort by the United Nations, its regional Commission ESCAP and 5 specialised businesses FAO, UNDRR, UNEP, WFP and WHO. 

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