Re: The e-Consultation on Hunger, Food and Nutrition Security

Emily Levitt Ruppert FAO/WFP Facilitation Team, United States of America

Dear All,

On the issue of nutrition security, I raise two questions to the group. 


1) This past week we've received contributions in support of the use of stunting as a key indicator for nutrition security in the post-2015 agenda: measuring stunting among U5 children, with data also measured for the subset of children U2, and by sex. Patrick Webb (Tufts University, USA) highlighted that the stunting indicator would need to be complemented by other measures that would support the achievement of stunting reduction.  What do others think about the use of stunting as an overarching measure of nutrition security in the post-2015 agenda? 


2) (Question at end in italics) There has been much discussion globally in civil society organizations on the importance of emphasizing dietary diversity and not solely the measurement of adequate caloric consumption in the post-2015 development agenda. Experts are reviewing the adequacy of available indicators and the capability of national information systems to collect this type of data. 


Linked to the attainment of balanced diets for all, this week one contributor (Colin Sage, U. Cork, Ireland) noted the fundamental importance of creating 'sustainable food systems for all' supporting this component of the UNSG's Zero Hunger Challenge. The paper (IJAS Commentary) Sage shared states: 


"A sustainable food system will not be achieved only through technology-centred changes in the realm of agriculture: it will require massive strides towards securing sustainable consumption too...Unfortunately, there appears to be rather greater appetite to support bio-science solutions that seek to re-engineer the bodies of farmed animals (rumen function in cattle, low-methane sheep, the EnviropigTM) in order to reduce emissions and waste streams, than to embark upon the challenge of formulating a global strategy to lower the levels of consumption in the interests of climate stability, global justice and human health."


What experience do participants in this e-consultation have with improving and/or measuring dietary diversity at scale? Do you agree with the suggestion to move away from reliance on biotechnology approaches in favor of large scale modifications to current consumption habits? Is a global strategy (that would need to be implemented/adapted at national level) to change dietary patterns possible?




Emily Levitt Ruppert, M.S., Ph.D.

Member of FAO-WFP Facilitation team

Coordinator, Agriculture-Nutrition Community of Practice