World Food Day: Food security and climate change

Extreme weather events like droughts, cyclones and floods are becoming more common. The effects of extreme weather are felt most by the poorest people in the world. Many of them are smallholder farmers, struggling to grow their crops.

That’s why the theme for this year’s World Food Day is “Climate is changing. Food and agriculture must too.” It’s celebrated on October 14th and is  arranged by UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization, FAO. The theme underlines the need for investments in sustainable agriculture to achieve the goal of the Zero Hunger Generation. Growing food in a sustainable way means, for example, using natural resources wisely, reducing food losses and increasing productivity.

“Food security needs to be prioritised in country climate actions plans,” declares FAO, and this year’s World Food Day is celebrated at a crucial time, just a few weeks before the next UN Climate Change Conference, COP 22, to be held in Morocco in November.

Video contest highlights climate change

As part of the World Food Day celebration, teenagers around the world were invited to produce videos on the theme. In her video, participant Emily Simeons asks what’s going to happen if we don’t act now, “Will we starve? What can we do to help?”.

She also provides her own top 5 list of things we can do: Recycle. Buy ugly vegetables and fruit. Love your leftovers. Don’t cut down trees. Use public transport.

You can watch her and the other participants’ videos on YouTube, by searching for #WFD2016VideoContest. FAO has also put together advice for a climate smart living and shows how we as individuals can tackle climate change by changing our daily habits. Emily Simeons summarises the planet’s situation in a simple way: “We’re destroying it. Let’s fix it together.”


Facts — World Food Day

The FAO was created on October 16th, 1945. The goal is to free humanity from hunger and malnutrition and to effectively manage the global food system. World Food Day is usually celebrated on October 16th, but this year will be on October 14th. There are events in over 150 countries to promote awareness about hunger and food security.