The Anti-Hunger Programme

"Hunger and malnutrition are unacceptable in a world that has both the knowledge and resources to end this human tragedy."

Event objective:

This symposium is open to everyone attending the World Food Summit: five years later. Participants are invited to discuss the background document, Anti-Hunger Programme: Reducing hunger through agriculture and rural development and wider access to food (first draft, FAO Rome, May, 2002).


Chair: Minister (to be announced)
Opening Address: Head of State or Government (to be announced)
Introductory Remarks:

  • Draft Anti-Hunger Programme: Dr. Hartwig de Haen, Assistant Director-General, Economic and Social Department, FAO
  • An international Alliance against Hunger: Professor Jeffrey D. Sachs, Director, Center for International Development, Harvard University, USA

General Discussion: Plenary
Summary of Conclusions: Chair

Political will, adequate resources and sustained action

The 1996 World Food Summit pledged to cut the number of undernourished people in the world from 816 million to 408 million by 2015. Five years later, it is clear that the target cannot be met without far-reaching changes in the way hunger and malnutrition are addressed. Fine words and promises must now be matched by unwavering political will, adequate resources and sustained actions.

Draft Anti-Hunger Programme

Commitment to protect and promote every human being's fundamental right to be free from hunger must be renewed. FAO has outlined a first draft of an Anti-Hunger Programme that would help reverse the deleterious effects of years of neglect to agricultural and rural development by national governments and international development partners, including the approximately 48% decline in ODA to agriculture seen during the 1990s.

The Programme proposes a twin-track approach that combines (1) resource mobilisation for agricultural and rural development which creates greater opportunities for the poor and hungry to improve their livelihoods, with (2) measures to meet the immediate food and nutrition needs of the seriously undernourished. It calls for greater public investment of some $24 billion annually in five interrelated action areas:

  • Improvement of farm productivity in poor rural communities;
  • Development and conservation of natural resources;
  • Improve rural infrastructure and market access;
  • Strengthening of knowledge generation, learning and information; and
  • Ensuring access to food for the most needy.

An international Alliance against Hunger

The draft Anti-Hunger Programme recognises that the achievement of the goal of reducing by half the number of hungry is dependent upon a broad international alliance of all those seriously concerned working together to overcome the scourge of hunger. It is therefore proposed that the Symposium explore the desirability of establishing such an alliance and discuss its mission, goals and activities.


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FAO, 2002