“Food security exists when all people, at all times, have physical, social and economic access to sufficient safe and nutritious food that meets their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life.” Committee on World Food Security, a committee of the United Nations Organisation (UNO)

Naseegh Jaffer, National Director of Masifundise Development Trust recently attended CFS 42, the 42nd Plenary Session of the CFS (Committee on Food Security) and the General Forum of the Civil Society Mechanism (CSM) in Rome.

The General Forum of the CSM happens every year, just before the CFS Plenary session, and its main task is to make an input into the discussions at the CSF Plenary on behalf of the poor and marginalised of the world.

Jaffer says that the CSF is a Committee of the United Nations and reports directly to the UN General Assembly. Its Plenary sits every year on October 16, the anniversary of the formation of the Food and Agriculture Organisation.

“Its main function is to monitor the production of food and the nutritional needs of the people of the world,” says Jaffer.

It also works towards the eradication of food insecurity and promotes nutrition.

“It must generate policies on sustainable food systems which include fish harvesting and post harvesting practices.”

“The CSM consists of global organisations involved in food production systems, and represents civil society organisations on the CSF.”

Represented within the CSM are global fishers, small-scale farmers, seed organisations, the urban poor, pastoralists, herders, foresters and other small scale food producers.

Some of the important outcomes of this year’s CSM and CSF Plenary are:

  • The adoption of innovative monitoring mechanisms on how effective CSF decisions to provide food security and eradicate hunger amongst the poor are implemented.
  • Monitoring CSF activities at national, regional and international levels.
  • State and organisations to provide clean and drinkable water to all workers who work on plantations and farms.

“The Committee on World Food Security (CFS) was set up in 1974 as an intergovernmental body to serve as a forum for review and follow up of food security policies. In 2009 the Committee went through a reform process to ensure that the voices of other stakeholders were heard in the global debate on food security and nutrition. The vision of the reformed CFS is to be the most inclusive international and intergovernmental platform for all stakeholders to work together in a co-ordinated way to ensure food security and nutrition for all. CFS was reformed to address short term crises but also long term structural issues.”  From the CSF website.

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