Understanding Food Security
Ensuring the security of food production and consumption systems, including food waste:
Sustainability dimensions of the food cycle.
This theme is part of GDRC's FEWW Nexus
The Global Soil Partnership (GSP) is a global mechanism established in 2012 to position soils in the Global Agenda and to promote sustainable soil management. The Partnership, hosted by FAO, works to improve soil governanc towards food security, climate change adaptation and mitigation, and sustainable development for all.
■ Global Soil Partnership

The United Nations estimates that fish supports the livelihoods of 10-12% of the world's population. More than 3 billion people rely on fish for 20% of their daily protein intake, with some coastal communities reliant on fish for almost 70% pf their intake. The world community celebrates World Fisheries Day every year on 21 November.
■ Do Your Bit

ARCHIVES: The United Nations designated 2016 as the International Year of Pulses. The IYP 2016 aimed to heighten public awareness of the nutritional benefits of pulses as part of sustainable food production aimed towards food security and nutrition.
■ Intl. Year of Pulses

Did you know that only 20 crop species provide for 90% of the world's food requirements? And that wheat, maize, and rice account for 60% of the world's diet?
■ Intl. Year of Pulses

The missing link in the New Urban Agenda is: Food systems. Nutrition and agriculture as key parts of integrated urban-rural development are almost completely absent from the Habitat III discussions.
■ Initiatives

A hamburger need 5,000 liters of water to prepare, when you consider it's whole food chain. McDonald's sells 75 hamburgers every second. The water needed for that can fill a standard swimming pool. Every second.
■ Fast Facts

 GAIN  The Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition is dedicated to supporting the use of food fortification and other strategies aimed at improving the health and nutrition of populations at risk.
■ Initiatives

 CFS  The Committee on World Food Security (CFS) is the foremost inclusive international and intergovernmental platform for all stakeholders to work together to ensure food security and nutrition for all.
■ Initiatives

The Climate and Food Insecurity Index is a measure of how vulnerable a country's food security system is to the negative impacts of weather and climate
■ Resources

The world, and Asia, is currently passing through a difficult period of concern about the future sustainability of food supplies. Read the report prepared by the UN Population Division: "World Population Prospects: The 2015 Revision, Key Findings and Advance Tables"
■ Food & Sustainability

Food PlateNineteen million tons. Thatis how much food Japan throws away every year, according to the Ministry of the Environment. As if that wasn't bad enough, up to 9 million tons of this food is disposed of before its expiration date.
... Metropolis magazine
■ Food waste facts

Keep track of food security issues at the global level: Explore the websites of FAO, IFAD and WFP - the three UN agencies tasked by the UN General Assembly with food and related issues.
■ Resources

How much of the food you will eat today will be locally produced? And how much will travel hundreds, if not thousands, of miles before it is delivered to your plate?
■ Food Miles?

Welcome to the GDRC's resource pages on Food Security. This is an output of GDRC's Sustainable Development research Programme
■ Welcome!

📖 GDRC presents a short lexicon of terms related to food. If you have any terms to add to the list, please use the email listed at the end of this page.
■ Food Security Lexicon

In 2030, only 29% of the global harvests of 10 major crops may be directly consumed as food, down from about 51% in the 1960s. The rest will be used for meat production, biofuels and other purposes.
■ Food is not just food!

Did you know? To produce one kilogram of corn, we need to use 400 litres of water!
■ Did you know?

What is the difference between food loss and food waste?
■ Food Loss v/s Food Waste

The BBC series, "Follow the Food" examines the biggest challenges facing the world food system, from climate change to malnutrition, and looks at some of the solutions to overcome them.
■ BBC TV Series

Did you know?
There are more than 7,000 edible plant species, but only about 170 are grown on a commercial scale? - FAO

■ Food varieties


In 2010, Japan discarded approximately 18 million tonnes of food annually—five to eight million tonnes of that food was considered edible when it was discarded. This was equal to the total rice produced domestically in the country
■ Fast Facts

The modern supermarket is a marvel of globalization: In the dead of winter, you can buy Mexican tomatoes, Chilean asparagus, Californian citrus, and meat and seafood that may have traveled to numerous countries before hitting the shelves. With “Follow Your Food,” you can take a closer look at what goes on behind the scenes.
■ Initiatives

Food waste is no laughing matter, but laugh anyway! US comedian, John Oliver, tackles the issue of food waste in a recent episode of "Last Week Tonight"
■ Resources

Reducing global food waste will also reduce the amount of greenhouse gas in the atmosphere. Scientists say that up to 14% of all emissions from agriculture could be avoided by 2050, if food use and distribution is better managed.
■ Resources

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations has set up a new initiative: FAO-Nobel Laureates for Food Security and Peace
■ Initiatives

Limited access to food not only threatens the health and wellbeing of vulnerable people, but also the economic vitality of communities and nations.
■ Opinion - MSNBC

WEDJune 5th is celebrated the world over as World Environment Day. The intrinsic links between our environment and the problems we are facing - whether climate change or biological diversity or any of the myriad of problems - and the security of our food production and consumption systems, is an important issue to be kept in mind.
■ Do Your Bit

Of the world’s 805 million people chronically undernourished in 2012–2014, two-thirds (526 million people, or 12% of the region’s population) reside in developing countries in Asia.
- FAO, IFAD, and WFP
■ Resources

Foods that travels over 2500kms are responsible for upto 17 times the CO2 of local grown food
- source unknown
■ Fast facts

If you have any suggestions, questions or comments, please email GDRC's Coordinator:

■ Contact

UN Decade of Action on Nutrition (2016-2025)
The Decade is a commitment by countries to undertake sustained and coherent implementation of policies, programmes and increased investments to eliminate malnutrition in all its forms, everywhere, leaving no one behind.
■ UN Decade on Nutrition

BEFS The Bioenergy and Food Security Approach was developed by FAO to support countries in designing and implementing sustainable bioenergy policies and strategies. The approach promotes food and energy security and contributes to agricultural and rural development.
■ Decision-Making Tool

29 September has been designated as the International Day of Awareness of Food Loss and Waste. We really need to work on this unethical disregard ... more than 50% of all food is lost or wasted before it reaches our plates.
■ Do Your Bit


As a part of its Post-2015 contribution "Nourishing People, Nurturing the Planet", FAO released an interesting list of 100 facts in 14 themes linking people, food and the planet. View the PDF ...
■ Resources


orest degradation, land-based pollution, soil nutrient degradation, and soil salinization, create a widening gap between demand for natural resources for food production and the environment’s ability to provide and replenish those resources.
■ Fast Facts

Developing countries in Asia and the Pacific are likely to face the highest reductions in agricultural potential in the world due to climate change. By 2050, the expected yield reduction for irrigated paddy is in the range of 14–20%; for irrigated wheat, 32-44%; irrigated maize, 2–5%; and irrigated soybean, 9–18%.
■ Initiatives

SDG 2: End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture
■ Initiatives

The United Nations General Assembly proclaimed a UN Decade of Action on Nutrition that will run from 2016 to 2025 - a major step towards mobilizing action around reducing hunger and improving nutrition around the world.
■ Initiatives

New report by UN FAO - "Peace and Food Security: Investing in Resilience to Sustain Rural Livelihoods amid Conflict"
■ Resources

Did you know? 16 October is celebrated worldwide as the World Food Day.
■ Do Your Bit

In 2010, it is estimated that the amount of edible food in Europe that ended up in the garbage could have fed all the hungry people in the worldtwo times over.
- Movie "Taste the waste"
■ Food waste facts

Nineteen million tons. That’s how much food Japan throws away every year, according to the Ministry of the Environment. As if that wasn’t bad enough, up to 9 million tons of this food is disposed before its expiration date.
- Metropolis magazine
■ Food Waste Facts

FAO publishes a new report on "Food Insecurity"
■ Publication

Food security issues essentially focus on having reliable access to a sufficient quantity of affordable, nutritious food.
■ Definitions

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Contact: Hari Srinivas - hsrinivas@gdrc.org