October 16: World Food Day
The World Food Day (WFD) is held annually on 16th October by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), UN (United Nations). It is celebrated to commemorate the creation of FAO. The day is marked by more than 150 countries all over the world. FAO organizes various events worldwide to create awareness and action for those who suffer from hunger. The aim is to ensure food security and nutritious diets for all.
Theme: Our Actions are our Future Healthy Diets for a Zero Hunger World
Significance of the theme:
There are around 820 million people hungry all over the world according to the FAO. The world is facing a crisis of extremes due to food insecurity and people becoming obese day by day. This is mainly because of the shift from plant-based, fibre-rich diets to refined starch, fats, salts, processes foods that are high in calories. It is also marked by excessive consumption of meat.
The main reason behind the scenario is globalization, urbanization and income growth. Out of 30,000 edible plant species known to humans, only 200 are cultivated.
Another factor that can help reduce hunger is food wastage. According to the State of Agriculture report published by FAO, around 14% of world’s food is wasted after harvesting. It also says that around 60% of micro nutrients are lost because of wastage of fruits, animal based products and vegetables.
The WFD focuses on Sustainable Development Goal (SDG)-2: Zero Hunger
Significance of SDG2
- According to FAO, there are more than 3.1 million children who die of children every year.
- Ending child undernutrition will help to increase GDP of developing countries by 16.5%
- Investing 1 USD to remove hunger will bring return between 15 USD and 139 USD.
- Ending child mortality due to nutrition deficiency will increase productivity in work places by 20%