Sustainable Development Goals Helpdesk

Overview > The SDGs and FAO Strategic Framework

Agrifood systems are only sustainable when they achieve the three dimensions of sustainable development - economic growth, environmental protection (and indeed regeneration) and inclusive social justice. Transitioning to such sustainable agrifood systems also requires a multi-dimensional and integrated approach. 

The 17 Sustainable Development Goals identify the interconnected challenges we must overcome to achieve their collective aim to "end poverty and ensure prosperity for all". The solutions to these challenges are also interlinked. Therefore, these goals cannot be tackled individually but must be advanced simultaneously and acted upon in tandem.  

For example, the world will never achieve Zero hunger (SDG2) without reducing poverty (SDG1), inequality and addressing equitable access to resources (SDG10). But equally, ensuring Good Health and Wellbeing (SDG3) for the world's population depends on providing sufficient food for all (SDG2). Likewise, it is critical to understand the trade-offs between the goals to ensure that progress towards one SDG is not detrimental to the progress of another. For instance, increasing production (SDG2) has implications for the protection of biodiversity and natural resources (SDG15). Therefore, carefully designed policy measures and innovative solutions are needed to maximise synergies between these goals for collective advancement, while minimising trade-offs to transition to sustainable agrifood systems.


To support this, FAO has aligned its strategic framework with the SDGs. This framework provides an operational blueprint to accelerate the SDGs through the transformation to MORE efficient, inclusive, resilient and sustainable agrifood systems for better production, better nutrition, a better environment, and a better life, leaving no one behind. Each of these areas of transformation has its own priority actions, which relate to several interrelated SDGs targets. This enables progress on the interplay between the SDGs for the swiftest and most favourable outcome.