Please find attached to the three themes, which is also set out below.
Food and Nutrition Security in the Post-2015 Development Agenda - Submission by Population Matters
This submission is in response to the call for papers
What do you see as the key lessons learned during the current Millennium Development Goals (MDG) Framework (1990-2015), in particular in relation to the MDGs of relevance to hunger, food insecurity and malnutrition?
The world population increased during that period by over one third i.e. two billion people. Until we stabilize population numbers, we are always trying to hit a moving target which is moving away from us. We are also putting ever more pressure on limited resources, particularly land, water, energy and fisheries. The key lesson is that we should seek to limit demand for food as well as increase supply of it.
What do you consider the main challenges and opportunities towards achieving food and nutrition security in the coming years?
One of the main demand side challenges continues to be population growth. During the period 2015-2030, the UNDESA Population Division medium projection is that the population will grow by 14% or over one billion people. This assumes a continued reduction in the global birth rate; the actual growth in population could well be more than that.
Another demand side challenge is dietary change with a move in some strata of developing countries to a more meat based, input intensive diet.
On the supply side, one of the principal groups of challenges is to key agricultural inputs. These include:
Depletion of marine and freshwater fish stocks by pollution and modern fishing methods is a challenge which should be considered and addressed.
Increased impact of plant pests and disease due to monocultural farming practices and growing resistance to pesticides.
Climate change has the potential to affect food productivity in major, though uncertain, ways:
These are opportunities in the greater use of appropriate technologies. Another opportunity is to accelerate the declining birth rate by promoting rights based family planning, women’s empowerment and the benefits of smaller families.
What works best? Drawing on existing knowledge, please tell us how we should go about addressing the hunger, food insecurity and malnutrition challenges head on.
Provide us with your own experiences and insights. For example, how important are questions of improved governance, rights-based approaches, accountability and political commitment in achieving food and nutrition security?
Furthermore, how could we best draw upon current initiatives, including the Zero Hunger Challenge, launched by the UN Secretary General at the Rio+20 UN Conference on Sustainable Development (www.zerohungerchallenge.org), and the Global Strategic Framework for Food Security and Nutrition elaborated by the CFS?
One important strategy to addressing these challenges should be to reduce and ultimately halt the growth in demand for food.
This should be done in two ways:
The latter can be achieved through rights based family planning, women’s empowerment and through promoting the personal and social benefits of smaller families.
For the Post-2015 Global Development Framework to be complete, global (and regional or national) objectives, targets and indicators will be identified towards tackling hunger, food insecurity and malnutrition. A set of objectives has been put forward by the UN Secretary-General under Zero Hunger Challenge (ZHC):
a. 100% access to adequate food all year round
b. Zero stunted children less than 2 years old
c. All food systems are sustainable
d. 100% increase in smallholder productivity and income
e. Zero loss or waste of food.
Please provide us with your feedback on the above list of objectives – or provide your own proposals. Should some objectives be country-specific, or regional, rather than global? Should the objectives be time-bound?
These seem to be valid objectives and all of them would be easier to achieve with slower or no population growth. The following additional objectives address this point:
The UN DESA Population Division medium (most likely variant) projection for 2030 is 8.3 billion. Limiting numbers to 8 billion is a modest difference, but would establish the principle of the world population limitation goal. Moreover, it will still require a marked fall in the birth rate (see below).
SDG: Limit the world population to 8 billion by 2030.
SDG: Limit average total fertility rate to 2 children per woman.
SDG: Universal access to a full range of affordable family planning commodities and services.
SDG: Ensure gender parity in employment rates.
SDG: Reduce the number of people in extreme poverty by half.
SDG: Reduce the number of unemployed and under-employed by half.
SDG: Achieve gender parity in secondary education.
SDG: End marriage under the age of eighteen.
SDG: End payments or other benefits related to the number of children except for reasons of health, education and targeted poverty alleviation.
SDG: Achieve a majority preference for a family size of two or fewer.
SDG: Provide universal sex and relationships education, including family planning.
SDG: Provide access to legal and safe abortion on demand.
135-137 Station Road
London E4 6AG
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)