New U.N. Initiative Calls for Zero Hunger

Friday, July 6, 2012

Also the goal of the Foodgrains Bank

Zero hunger—that’s the goal of Canadian Foodgrains bank, and also the goal of a new initiative launched by the United Nations.

Called the Zero Hunger Challenge, the initiative was launched June 22 by United Nations General Secretary Ban Ki-moon at the Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio +20) in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

“In a world of plenty, no one—not a single person—should go hungry,” Ban said at the conference. “I invite all of you to join me in working for a future without hunger.”

Zero hunger “would boost economic growth, reduce poverty and safeguard the environment,” Ban added, calling on world governments and individuals to honour past promises and work together to put an end to hunger. “It would foster peace and stability.

The five main objectives of the Zero Hunger Challenge are to achieve 100 per cent access to adequate food all year round; to end malnutrition in pregnancy and early childhood; to make all food systems sustainable; to increase growth in the productivity and income of smallholders, particularly women; and to achieve a zero rate of food waste.

The Challenge is supported by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, International Fund for Agricultural Development, World Food Programme, UN Children’s Fund, the World Bank and Bioversity International.

“Big problems call for bold goals,” added FAO Director-General, José Graziano da Silva. “The Zero Hunger Challenge can help us mobilize political commitment, the first step to eradicate hunger.”

For Canadian Foodgrains Bank Executive Director, the Zero Challenge is a welcome initiative.

“The goal of the Foodgrains Bank is to end hunger,” says Cornelius, noting that an estimated 900 million people in the world don’t get enough food to live healthy and productive lives.

“But no one can do it alone. It will take the whole world working together to create a planet where everyone has enough to eat.”

Click here to watch a video of Ban Ki-moon talking about the Zero Hunger Challenge.