Securing sustainable food systems hinges on gender equality

FAO, IFAD and WFP mark International Women’s Day. Events marking this year's IWD present opportunities to mobilize global action to achieve gender equality...

A Kenyan women farmers’ group during one of their meetings. Working in a group ensures that the women can supply more crops, secure stable and good prices as well as share costs.


The three United Nations' Rome-based agencies dedicated to food and agriculture called today for bolder action to achieve gender equality and empower women and girls in the agricultural sector and beyond.

Securing sustainable global food systems is only possible if women everywhere are empowered and their rights recognized and respected, stressed FAO, IFAD and WFP at an event today marking International Women's Day (IWD) at FAO headquarters.

This year's IWD - with the theme "I am Generation Equality: Realizing Women's Rights" - is an opportunity to review global progress on gender equality and women's empowerment in the 25 years since the Fourth World Conference on Women[1], identify remaining gender gaps, and outline the way forward.

"FAO will continue to play its part, in partnership with others, in strengthening gender equality, realizing women's rights and accelerating their socio-economic empowerment. Only then will we reach our common goal: to eradicate hunger, ensure food security, eliminate all forms of malnutrition, and make this world a better place for us," said FAO Director-General QU Dongyu.

"Each year, International Women's Day is both a cause for celebration and a call for action," said Gilbert F. Houngbo, IFAD President. "Collectively, we can work together to create a gender-equal world. Not simply because it's the right thing to do, but also because it makes sense. Increasing gender equality is critical to deliver strong economic growth. It can help cut down on extreme poverty and reduce chronic hunger. It can lead to longer-lasting peace. And it can benefit entire families and empower all those who face discrimination."

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