Celebrated annually on October 16, World Food Day draws attention to issues related to hunger, food insecurity and obesity. Overweight people outnumber people who are food insecure. According to the latest report from the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), while hunger affected 821 million people worldwide in 2017, the proportion of obese adults reached 13.3% in 2016 – the equivalent. to 672 million people.
In Brazil, while hunger affects less than 2.5% of the population, obesity already affects almost 20% of Brazilians. In some regions, such as the Northeast, other facets of malnutrition still persist: child malnutrition, for example, is still above 5%.
“In a reality in which malnutrition is one of the great wounds of the contemporary world, reinventing food culture at all stages of the chain is an urgent call,” warns FAO’s Brazilian representative, Rafael Zavala.
According to Zavala, the transition to more sustainable food and agriculture benefits not only diets, but ecosystems and the economy. “A change that will have consequences not only on better quality food for the population, but also on the world economy, poverty eradication and sustainable development of the planet,” he concludes.
In 2019, the theme of the celebration will be “Our Actions Represent Our Future: Healthy Diets for a Zero Hunger World.” The idea in choosing the slogan, according to the UN, is that from a more diversified and nutritious diet – which depends not only on individual behavioral change, but also on public policies that foster this social transformation; impacts will start to be felt in the most different scenarios: starting with the health of the population.
Event in Brazil
The celebration of World Food Day in Brazil will take place this Monday (14), at the National Museum located on the Esplanade of Ministries, in Brasilia. At the occasion, chef and natural food activist Bela Gil will talk about the importance of healthy diets and their consequences for society and the future of the planet. After the lecture, the audience is invited to an open-air yoga class with instructor Andrea Hughes.
Read the exclusive interview with Bela Gil:Bela Gil: agroecology, healthy food, and food security
This year’s World Day actions will be jointly undertaken by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO); International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD); World Food Program (WFP) and the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA).