Lahore: Food security is the most tangible threat to Pakistan. This threat cannot be mitigated by a variable increase in food production along, but by efforts to drastically improve access to food sources and clean.
Food security academia and experts expressed these views during a drawing competition on World Food Day (WFD) here on Thursday. Under the theme of WFD 2014 – Family Farming: feeding the world, caring the earth – drawing competition between the two schools, St. John’s Sacred Heart School and Talent School System, was organized jointly by Indus Consortium and Oxfam Pakistan in St. John Sacred School Lahore.
Late last year, the United Nations had declared year 2014 as International Year of Family Farming (IYFF) to stress the vast potential family farmers have to eradicate hunger and preserve natural resources. It is pertinent to mention here that according to the National Nutrition Survey 2013, around 60 per cent of Pakistan’s total population is facing food insecurity, and in these households, almost 50 per cent women and children were malnourished. Furthermore, an estimated 35 per cent of child deaths (under age 5) in the country are linked to malnutrition, while the World Health Organization labels a national average of 15 per cent or above as an “emergency”.
Indus Consortium in collaboration with Oxfam Novib is implementing GROW campaign in Pakistan to promote the food security agenda and to enhance the outreach of campaign to urban youth, women and masses.
The WFD 2014 theme – Family Farming: “Feeding the world, caring for the earth” – has been chosen to raise the profile of family farming and smallholder farmers. It focuses world attention on the significant role of family farming in eradicating hunger & poverty, providing food security & nutrition, improving livelihoods, managing natural resources, protecting environment, and achieving sustainable development, in particular in rural areas.
The event will serve as a mean to promote the agenda of producing and consuming organic food and will also raise awareness regarding the issue of food insecurity being faced by the rural as well as urban population particularly in terms of linkage of food insecurity. It is often said, “Food insecurity anywhere, threatens peace everywhere”. Food insecurity may cause unrest or even political instability. Persistent food insecurity may cause conflicts, civil wars and can threaten the overall peace of community, society, nation or world depending on the extent and spectrum of hunger and poverty.
Food security for populations at risk can be significantly improved through technical interventions in areas such as post-harvest management, processing and storage, animal husbandry, agricultural marketing, bullock traction, agro-forestry, inventory credit, and the formation of farming groups and committees.