As the International Year of Mountains comes to a close,
FAO, as lead agency for the Year, looks ahead to actions that
will strengthen the ability of countries to lead the sustainable
development of their mountain regions.
By 2005, over half the world's people will live in cities. Supplying them with safe and affordable food will strain the food supply and distribution chain to the breaking point. The challenge is greatest in the developing world's cities.
For the first time, the number of overweight individuals worldwide rivals the number of underweight. And many of them are found in developing nations. Obesity in poor nations is growing -- in some cases reaching the same levels as the industrialized world. Obesity carries a greater risk of chronic illness including diabetes, heart disease and cancer. It also often masks underlying deficiencies in vitamins and minerals. For countries whose resources are already stretched to the limit, confronting this new problem poses a serious challenge.