The Right to Food

The academia supports the human right to adequate food

News - 05.06.2019

5 June 2019, Rome- The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development imposes on us a major challenge and ambitious goals. Without question, the only way to move forward is to work jointly with partners, among them academia and research institutions. With their technical expertise and capabilities, while working jointly with legislators, the realization of the right to adequate food and the fight against hunger and malnutrition can be greatly enhanced.  

Against this backdrop, experts from academia have come together since last years, with the collaboration of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), to encourage greater awareness and promotion of the right to food (RTF). These networks are designed to guarantee an adequate, sustainable and healthy food for everyone through research and public initiatives. Results can be seen in those laws that are finally approved with a human rights- based approach, generated by the combined efforts of civil society, academia and parliamentarians, with broad public support.

The first one established, the Right to Food Observatory for Latin America and the Caribbean (RFO-LAC), dates back to 2011. Supported by the Spanish Cooperation Agency, currently it is composed of more than seventy institutions from 17 countries in the region, represented by different faculties and study centers. Their members have extensive experience in methodology, action, analysis, monitoring and assessment of public policy and legislation, as well as advising parliamentary commissions in the context of partnerships with the Parliamentary Fronts Against Hunger in Latin America and the Caribbean (PFH LAC) and the Latin American and Caribbean Parliament (PARLATINO).

In 2017, FAO partnered with RUFORUM, a consortium of 85 African universities in Eastern, Central, Western and Southern Africa, to foster policy debates on food security and agriculture. One year later, the event “Engaging parliamentarians and academia to enhance their transformative potential to achieve Agenda 2063 and SDG2”, was held to boosting dialogue and networking among policymakers and researchers. In light with the dire food security challengues Africa faces, FAO urged them to use their complementary mandates to fight hunger in a transformational way.

More recently, in September 2018, the Spanish Observatory on the Right to Food was officially presented. It aims at promoting exchange experience and dialogue among academic institutions of IberoAmerica, parliaments, civil society and social organizations. Today it is made of up to thirty academic institutions and several social organizations. The Observatory participated in the Global Parliamentary Summit against Hunger and Malnutrition, where they expressed interest in joining forces with the Spanish Government in the fight against hunger.

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