The Right to Food around the Globe


The Constitution of the Republic of Guatemala explicitly guarantees the right to adequate food.

The Republic of Guatemala has become a State party to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) in 1988 by way of accession. It signed the Optional Protocol (OP-ICESCR) in 2009, but has not ratified it yet.


Explicit protection of the right to adequate food

Article 51: “Protection of [the] Minors and [of] the Elderly - The State will protect the physical, mental, and moral health of the minors of age and of the elderly. It will guarantee to them their right to food, health, education, and security and social prevision.” 

Directive principles of state policy

Article 99: “Feeding and Nutrition. - The State will see to it that the food and the nutrition of the population meet the minimum health requirements. The specialized institutions of the State must coordinate their actions among themselves or with [the] international organs dedicated to health, [in order] to achieve an effective national food system..” 


National status of international obligations

Article 46: “Preeminence of [the] International Law. - The general principle that within matters of human rights, the treaties and agreements approved and ratified by Guatemala, have preeminence over the internal law[,] is established.” 

Other pertinent provisions for the realization of the right to adequate food

Artículo 94: “The State will see to the health and the social assistance of all the inhabitants. It will develop, through its institutions, actions of prevention, promotion, recovery, rehabilitation, coordination and those complementary ones [that are] appropriate in order to procure [for them] the most complete physical, mental, and social wellbeing..” 

Artículo 102: “The minimum social rights that form the basis of the labor legislation and the activity of the tribunals and [the] authorities [are]: 
a) 1.The right to the free choice of work and the satisfactory economic conditions that guarantee a dignified existence for the worker and his [or her] family.”

Artículo 119: “The following are the fundamental obligations of the State:
d. 4.To see to the raising of the standard of living of all the inhabitants of the country, securing the wellbeing of the family.”


Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) – 1948

International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) – 1966

Status: Accession (1988)

Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) – 1979

Status: Ratification (1982)

Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) – 1989

Status: Ratification (1990)

Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) – 2006

Status: Ratification (2009)

Legislation and policies recognizing the right to adequate food

Guidance on how to progressively realise the human right to adequate food in contexts of national food security has been provided by the Right to Food Guidelines, adopted by the FAO Council and endorsed by the Committee on World Food Security.

Considering that the human right to adequate food can be implemented through a variety of legal and policy actions, we invite you to visit the FAOLEX Country Profile database for a wide-ranging collection of measures that have been taken at national level. Some of the documents you may find are legislation and policies that touch on a number of relevant Guidelines, such as those on Access to resources and assets (Guideline 8), Food safety and consumer protection (Guideline 9), Support for vulnerable groups (Guideline 13) and Natural and human-made disasters (Guideline 16).

Here below you can find policies and legislation that explicitly mention the right to food

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