16 October: World Food Day
World Food Day was observed globally on 16 October 2017 with the theme ‘Change the future of migration. Invest in food security and rural development’.
About World Food Day
• The day is celebrated annually on 16 October to commemorate the founding of the Food & Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the UN in 1945.
• Events are organized in over 150 countries across the world, making it one of the most celebrated days of the UN calendar.
• The events mainly aim to promote worldwide awareness and action for those who suffer from hunger and for the need to ensure food security and nutritious diets for all.
• The day is also a chance for everyone to show their commitment to Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 2 – to achieve Zero Hunger by 2030.
• It also offers an occasion to celebrate the progress that the world has already made towards reaching the same goal of #ZeroHunger.
WFD Theme: Key Facts
• Though migration is largely a result of increased conflict and political instability, hunger, poverty and climate change also play an important part.
• Large movements of people today are presenting complex challenges, which call for global action. Many migrants chose to flee to developing nations, creating tensions where resources are already scarce.
• Three-quarters of the extreme poor depend on agriculture and other rural activities for survival.
• Rural development can address issues that compel people to move in the first place. It can be done by creating business opportunities and jobs for young people that are not only crop-based such as small dairy or poultry production, food processing or horticulture enterprises.
• The development of rural areas can lead to increased food security, more resilient livelihoods, better access to social protection, and reduced conflict over natural resources and solutions to environmental degradation and climate change.
• By investing in rural development, the international community can also harness migration’s potential to support development and build the resilience of displaced and host communities, thereby laying the foundation for long-term recovery and inclusive and sustainable growth.
Zero Hunger Challenge
The Zero Hunger Challenge was launched by then UN secretary-general Ban Ki-Moon, in 2012.
The challenge aims for a future where every individual has adequate nutrition.
To achieve the same, efforts are required to ensure that every individual enjoys the Right to Adequate Food, women are empowered and priority is given to family farming and sustainable food systems.
Hunger Problem in India
• According to the latest Global Hunger Index (GHI) 2017, India has slipped down by 3 spots to 100 among 119 developing countries.
• India has fallen behind nations such as North Korea, Bangladesh and even conflict-stricken Iraq.
• In Asia, only Afghanistan and Pakistan are ranked worse than India at 107 and 106 respectively.
• The index highlights major hunger issue in the country, indicating that it is getting worse.
• The index shows that more than a fifth of Indian children under the age of five weigh too little for their height and a third are too short for their age.
• Last year, India was ranked 97th in the list. The GHI ranks countries based on four indicators -undernourishment, child mortality, child wasting and child stunting.