It was clear from the outset that the goals of the MDG framework are interconnected and each one of them cannot be achieved without also addressing other areas. This is important to keep in mind as we look forward beyond 2015. Addressing food security and nutrition requires addressing areas such as inequalities, population dynamics, conflicts and governance. Vulnerable groups are those most affected by food insecurity, and women in particular tend to bear the burden of sourcing food and ensuring their families are adequately nourished, often forcing them into dangerous situations to do so. Vulnerable groups must be included in strategies and programmes aimed at improving access to food and nutrition to ensure they do not face additional barriers and can enjoy equal access to food and nutrition sources.
It is of utmost importance for their health that children under 5 and pregnant women are well-nourished, yet malnourishment among these groups is widespread throughout the developing world. Targeting these groups to improve their nutritional status should be paramount.
Ensuring investments are made in sexual and reproductive health and rights can have a positive impact on food security and nutrition. When women and couples are able to choose the number, timing and spacing of their children they can plan their families, and will often choose to have smaller families. Smaller families means fewer mouths to feed and a greater chance of children being well-nourished.
This thematic discussion was led by FAO and WFP in collaboration with “The World We Want”.
The consultation was facilitated by the Global Forum on Food Security and Nutrition (FSN Forum)