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Director General  José Graziano da Silva

FAO Director-General applauds UN Secretary-General’s stance on hunger

“The Zero Hunger Challenge you launched at the Rio+20 Conference is helping catalyze a global movement to eliminate hunger and malnutrition”
©FAO/Giuseppe Carotenuto
UN Secretary-General at FAO headquarters today.

7 May 2014, Rome- FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva today praised UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon for his support in the fight against hunger at a meeting with FAO member countries, the Committee on World Food Security (CFS), and UN Rome-based agencies staff.

“The Zero Hunger Challenge you launched at the Rio+20 Conference is helping catalyze a global movement to eliminate hunger and malnutrition,” Graziano da Silva said in a video message.

“Your presence at FAO reflects the importance of food security," he added. "It is at the heart of FAO’s mandate. You are a strong supporter of this cause.”

Graziano da Silva was not present at the gathering in Rome due to his participation at the FAO Regional Conference for Latin America and the Caribbean, which began today in Santiago,Chile. “As much as I would have been honored to personally attend, duty comes first,” the FAO chief said.

 “I thank and applaud FAO Director-General’s leadership in working together with all of us to alleviate and to address global food insecurity,” UN Secretary-General said.

“We will not eliminate extreme poverty or achieve sustainable development without adequate food and nutrition for all,” Ban said.  “That is why the Rome agenda is of such great importance to the global agenda. We cannot know peace or security if one in eight people are hungry.”

“We cannot say we have reached our goals, until every man, woman and child realizes their Right to Adequate Food,” the UN leader added. 

“And we cannot do any of it without your work and support,” he told CFS stakeholders, member countries and staff of FAO, the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the World Food Programme (WFP), all of which are headquartered in Rome.

 “We have enough food today. But we need to adapt and shift to more sustainable food systems to ensure our food supply tomorrow,” Graziano da Silva said in his remarks.

In his speech, the FAO Director-General mentioned his support for the Climate Summit which the UN Secretary-General will host onSeptember 23rd in New York.

The meeting was organized by the Committee on World Food Security (CFS), set up in 1974 as an intergovernmental body to serve as a forum for review and follow up of food security policies.

Chaired by the Netherlands Ambassador to the UN agencies in Rome Gerda Verburg, the CFS is the world's most important intergovernmental and multi-stakeholderplatform for food security and nutrition.