Forum global sur la sécurité alimentaire et la nutrition (Forum FSN)

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    • Contribution by Rosario Castro, Brooke Feldman and Lilian Nkengla


      Background and Rationale

      The background and rational is really comprehensive addressing most challenges to achieve gender equality and the full realization of women’s and girls’ rights.

      Safe guarding

      • There should be a mention of how to design and implement this work with the risk of aid workers and the projects causing unintentional harm- not just through sexual exploitation and abuse. My suggestion is to include looking at the safe delivery of transformative work- especially in food insecure environments where people are more vulnerable- and how that’s including in the MEAL plans, program design, personnel, and budgets.
      • The background and rational is very comprehensive and covers many areas, however, there seems to be less mention of the political economy of food systems which focuses on power in food chains. For instance, big commodity buyers and food manufacturing companies are ideally placed to pit farmers against farmers, as their foodshed (the range of suppliers they source from) expanded, and to impose on farmers compliance with certain standards that make it even more difficult for small-scale producers particularly women to compete.  Largest agri-food corporations controlling global supply chains, gradually are able to strengthen their dominant position by network effects, by standard-setting, and by their ability to control the logistics of supply chains (Naseem, Spielman and Omamo 2010).
      • “The political economy approach to food systems insists on the need to address power in food chains. This is in part because of a basic concern with equity: since small-scale farmers [including women] are gradually being squeezed out of business in rich countries, and constitute a large proportion, perhaps even a majority, of the hungry in the global South, strengthening their position in food chains would make a significant contribution to the ability of peasant agriculture to develop, as well as to the reduction of rural poverty. But addressing the question of power in food chains is not simply a matter of protecting the weakest party in the relationships between the different actors of food systems; it also is in the general interest.” Excerpt from De Schutter O. 2019.  Suggest this article: De Schutter O. 2019.  The political Approach to food systems reform. IDS Bulletin, Transforming Development Knowledge, Vol. 50 No. 2 (2019). It is a human right.
      • Issues on production such as access to and decision-making over land, inputs, productive resources and services with very limited information on value chains e.g SMEs, local markets, market relationships and networks, food processing and trading space and consumers.

      Part 3 - Comments with reference to Part 3 - Zero Draft

      3.1 Women’s participation, voice and leadership in policy- and decision-making at all levels.

      34. “When women have control over the family income, it is more likely to be spent on food and well-being for their children.” Although is true that women economic empowerment has a direct impact to the well-being of their family and children, I wonder how does relate also with the direct well-being of women themselves. Does access to family impacts women’s greater access to food for themselves and therefore for their nutrition and well-being?

      3.2.  Elimination of violence and discrimination against women for improved food security and nutrition

      42. The text could make a greater case to describe or develop deeper the links between violence and discrimination against women and its direct link with food security and nutrition. 42 y 44 should go together since addressing the same issue.

      A topic missing in this policy area related to the existence of violence and discrimination in the workplace (farms, agricultural plantations, agricultural and food processing farms). There is evidence of the high prevalence of violence against women in the agricultural workplace, but the guidelines do not necessary address this issue. This area could be in 3.2 or 3.6.

      Access to education, capacity building, training, knowledge, and information services

      • This area not necessarily address the lack of education institutions in rural and agricultural areas that leads to the displacement of rural population to urban areas, leaving behind population with less access to connection and resources (women and girls with less resources).
      • Lack of childcare services for women workers
      • Harmful social norms hindering the participation of women/girls 

      Access to labour markets and decent work

      • Rural women or women farmers work in a greater extend in some regions of the world (such as Latin America) as an unpaid family worker (or in exchange of food or supplies), lacking direct access to resources, income and recognition of their work. Existence of child labor.
      • Labor exploitation in a greater extend in industrial agriculture and agricultural value chains. Long hours, low incomes with few benefits if any. Paradoxically, women working in food production do not consume the food their produce since most of this goes for exports. 

      3.7 Recognition, reduction and redistribution of unpaid care and domestic work

      • Need of childcare facilities for female laborers and care related benefits (paid and family leave, maternity leave)
      • The text focus in the gender division of labor but not necessarily explore the challenges experienced by agricultural workers and farmer to do both agricultural intense agricultural labor activities (specially in industrial agriculture) and unpaid care labor.  The intensity of agricultural labor in plantations and processing plants added to the care responsibilities have a negative impact in women’s lives and well-being (having women no time for eat or sleep).
      • Women and girls from rural areas are often employed in (under) paid and domestic care work in conditions of exploitation (and in some cases semi-servitude) affecting their well-being, access to decent income and food.

      There is not mention to a policy area that address situations related to conflict and crisis.