The Global Panel commits to the UN Decade of Action on Nutrition

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Since its inception in 2013, the Global Panel on Agriculture and Food Systems for Nutrition has been an influential voice in transforming the global discourse on food systems and nutrition, as well as applying evidence and convening power to develop recommendations for governments, especially in low- and middle-income countries, to shape policies that promote healthy, safe and affordable diets.

With poor diets now presenting a greater health threat than the combined effects of air pollution and alcohol, drug and tobacco use, an international response on the scale and commitment used to tackle HIV/AIDS and malaria will be required. Efforts need to go beyond agriculture to encompass trade, the environment and health, harnessing the power of the private sector and empowering consumers to access and demand better diets.

The UN Decade of Action on Nutrition is a major catalyst for these multi-sector commitments, building on the global political momentum generated by initiatives such as Nutrition for Growth, the Malabo Declaration on Accelerated Agricultural Growth and Transformation for Shared Prosperity and Improved Livelihoods, and the Sustainable Development Goals.

The Global Panel’s strength is in its foundation – as an independent group of influential experts with a commitment to tackling global challenges in food and nutrition security. Due to the wealth of knowledge and experience of its members, it is able to provide strategic thinking and deep analysis on a variety of emerging issues and present that information through both policy briefs and foresight reports. These evidence-based reports provide the necessary interlinkages when addressing issues of urbanization, consumer behaviour, food environments, food safety, climate change and more. These reports are the Global Panel’s important contribution to the Nutrition Decade because they provide substantive modelling and trend analysis to help policymakers better understand trends in agriculture and diets and to estimate costs/benefits of new agriculture and food policies. The Global Panel has also convened a High Level Stakeholder Group to ensure the success of the ongoing Foresight 2.0 project by drawing on the strategic and practical advice of the Group members and their influence in policy environments.

We therefore pledge our support to the UN Decade of Action on Nutrition. We will continue to bring together policymakers from different sectors in the food system to engage them in the challenge of tackling malnutrition in all its forms. We will deliver evidence and tools to encourage and support governments in low- and middle-income countries as they design and implement food and nutrition policies. We will continue to work with international and regional partners to foster changes in food systems that will shift dietary trends in the direction of better nutrition and improved health.

The UN Decade of Action on Nutrition provides us all with an opportunity to take action to transform our food systems in ways that ensure social justice, sustainable agricultural production, economic prosperity, and the greater diversity, availability, and affordability of healthy diets for all.