Nutrition and Food Systems - HLPE consultation on the V0 draft of the Report
At its 42nd session in October 2015, the UN Committee on World Food Security (CFS) requested the High Level Panel of Experts on Food Security and Nutrition (HLPE) to prepare a report on Nutrition and Food Systems. This report is expected to be presented at CFS 44 in October 2017.
As part of the process of elaboration of its reports, the HLPE is organizing a consultation to seek inputs, suggestions, and comments on the present V0 draft. This open e-consultation will be used by the HLPE to further elaborate the report, which will then be submitted to external expert review, before finalization and approval by the HLPE Steering Committee.
HLPE V0 drafts are deliberately presented early enough in the process - as a work-in-progress, with their range of imperfections – to allow sufficient time to give proper consideration to the feedback received so that it can play a really useful role in the elaboration of the report. It is a key part of the scientific dialogue between the HLPE Project Team and Steering Committee, and the rest of the knowledge community. It should be noted that the present V0 draft report does not yet identify areas for recommendations as it is too early to determine the major propositions stemming from the report.
It should be noted that there are several reports that have just been released or will be released over the coming year including the Foresight Report on the Future of Diets (September 2016) and the EAT-Lancet Commission on Sustainable Diets and Food Systems (June 2017). The Project Team members will ensure that these reports will be kept in due consideration.
In order to strengthen this draft, the HLPE would welcome submission of material, evidence-based suggestions, references, and examples, in particular addressing the following important questions:
- The purpose of this report is to analyse the ways in which food systems influence dietary patterns and hence nutritional outcomes. The objective is to focus on consumers and consider sustainability issues. The report aims to be solution oriented and to highlight efficient policies and programs. Are those major objective(s) clearly reflected in the V0 draft?
- Do you think that the overall structure of the draft is comprehensive enough, and adequately considered and articulated? Does the draft strike the right balance of coverage across the various chapters? Are there important aspects that are missing? Does the report correctly focus on the links between nutrition and food systems without straying beyond that?
- Does the conceptual framework need to be edited? Simplified? Should “the food environment” as defined in the draft be central to the framework?
- Are production systems and their role in shaping diets and nutritional outcomes adequately addressed?
- Does this draft cover adequately the main controversies in the field of Nutrition and food systems? Are there any remaining gaps?
- The project team is working on a categorization of food systems. Are you aware of specific approaches of use in that perspective, and particularly of quantitative indicators that could be used?
- Does this draft adequately show the multiplicity and complexity of diets and nutrition issues across different food systems and specific contexts with a good regional balance?
- What areas of the document are in need of strengthening or shortening?
- Chapter 4, Section 4.1 contains case studies/examples of effective policies and actions in different contexts/countries across the food system for diets and nutrition. Could you offer other practical, well-documented and significant examples to enrich and provide better balance to the variety of cases and the lessons learned, including the trade-offs or win-win outcomes in terms of addressing the different dimensions of diets for FSN?
- Section 4.2.2 on “Institutional Changes and Governance Across the Food System Movements for Nutrition” requires more work, and more inclusion of evidence and of the various players. Any inputs on this section are most welcome.
- Is the report too technical or too simplistic? Are all the concepts clearly defined?
- Are there any major omissions or gaps in the report? Are topics under-or over-represented in relation to their importance?
We thank in advance all the contributors for being kind enough to read and comment and suggest inputs on this early version of the report.