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Director General  José Graziano da Silva

FAO is focused on implementation, Director-General tells senior Canadian officials

Food security, nutrition and sustainable agriculture are key to achieving the SDGs

Group photo of FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva (2nd right) meeting Carolina Giliberti, Executive Vice-President of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (1st left), Fred Gorrell, Assistant Deputy Minister, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, and Chris Forbes, Associate Deputy Minister, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (1st right), following their Executive Roundtable.

16 November 2015, Ottawa - FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva today met with Canadian federal authorities and experts for talks that focused on global development efforts, in particular in agriculture, fisheries, forestry, food safety, statistics and resilience. During his visit to Ottawa, Graziano da Silva also discussed how to strengthen cooperation between FAO and Canada in these areas.

The talks included Carolina Giliberti, Executive Vice-President of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, Fred Gorrell, Assistant Deputy Minister of the Market and Industry Services Branch, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, and Chris Forbes, Associate Deputy Minister, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada.

The FAO Director-General highlighted the recently approved Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which have put hunger and agriculture at the center of global policy.

Food security, nutrition and sustainable agriculture are key to achieving the entire set of 17 SDGs, Graziano da Silva stressed.

In addition, Graziano da Silva underscored FAO’s new focus on the implementation of development initiatives and said the Agency was ready to assist countries in doing this.

He cited as an example of this, FAO’s Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries, which was established 20 years ago and recognizes at its essence the need for nature conservation while at the same time allowing developing countries to grow and prosper. From responsible fishing practices to handling, labelling and trade, the Code covers virtually all aspects of the fishing industry and has guided government policies on all continents.

Graziano da Silva also visited Quebec to attend commemorative events organized by the Quebec government and linked to the 70th anniversary of FAO's founding.

Presentation of commemorative medal

During his visit, the FAO Director-General presented a 70th anniversary commemorative medal to Landon Pearson, the daughter-in-law of former Canadian Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson, and to his grand-children, Patricia Pearson and Michael Pearson.

Former Prime Minister Pearson chaired the inaugural FAO Conference in 1945, when 44 countries came together and committed themselves to freeing humanity from hunger and malnutrition.

“They believed we had to work together as an international community to tackle the challenge,” the FAO Director-General said. “They also believed that agriculture, fisheries, forestry, natural resources management, including land and water, was central to inclusive development,” he added, assuring that “today, the over 190 Member States of FAO think the same way.”

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