Committee on World Food Security

Making a difference in food security and nutrition

Remarks by Ambassador Gabriel Ferrero, CFS Chairperson, at the UN General Assembly side event “Call for food security”

19 Sep 2023

19 September 2023, United Nations Headquarters, New York


Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Thank you for inviting me as the Chairperson of the Committee on World Food Security (CFS) of the United Nations to join you.

On behalf of the 140 Member States of the Committee, and all its stakeholders, we join our voices to this call for food security, for nutrition, for transforming existing food systems to ones that make the Human Right to Adequate Food for All a reality by 2030. It is doable.  

Let me start with the obvious. Peace is the most effective, cheapest and just way to end hunger. Weaponizing food or fertilizers is unacceptable.

1. If we tackle climate change, increasing the resilience of current food systems while reducing its impact on biodiversity, soil depletion, and desertification, it is doable.

2. If we put family farmers, who produce around 80% of the food the world consumes, and smallholder farmers, who produce around one-third of the world’s food, at the center of the responses, it is doable.

3. If we put agriculture and food systems’ workers rights at the center of our efforts, it is doable.

4. If we integrate climate finance, development finance, national budgets and responsible private sector investment, it is doable.
    >> I thank you, Minister Mariam Almehairi, for your bold leadership.

5. If we effectively pay smallholder and family farmers for providing nutritious food at a fair price, but also for providing environmental services through sustainable practices, we may end rural poverty while we regenerate ecosystems. It is doable.

6. If we build robust social protection systems, such as school meals and other nutrition-sensitive ones, ending children stunting and wasting, it is doable.

7. If the IMF and the IFIs expand the fiscal space of affected countries, including easing their debt burden, all what I said is certainly doable.

8. If we empower women and girls, and youth, as agents of food systems transformation, it is doable.

This is why the intergovernmental agreements on guidelines and policies recently achieved at the CFS give me great satisfaction. New global agreements, voluntary, but transformative!


The Committee on World Food Security of the United Nations, as the intergovernmental platform were governments and stakeholders converge on global key policy issues, where coordination is its mandate, shows how even in these challenging times all countries can achieve substantive global policy agreements as the ones I just mentioned.


When the world faces a food, finance, climate, biodiversity, conflicts, poverty and inequalities crises, it is a moral imperative that we don’t duplicate efforts, that we join forces, that we concentrate energies, that we rally behind common goals and a shared vision. It is imperative to support those countries that are suffering most, in a coordinated way. It is imperative to align to enhance national and local leadership for context-specific responses.

It is time to act, urgently, together.

I thank you.