“There are people in the world so hungry, that God cannot appear to them except in the form of bread.”- Mahatma Gandhi
World Food day is annually observed on the 16th of October. It honors the founding date of the Food and Agriculture Organization(FAO) launched by the United Nations in 1945. The FAO’s goal is to achieve food security all and ensure that people have access to good quality food all over the world.
World Food Day thus aims to raise awareness about food and nutrition, food security and ways to prevent food scarcity.
Why celebrate World Food Day?
Food is a bare necessity for all. It is the main driving source of our existence and survival. However there are a large number of people and many places on this planet that are currently facing food scarcity issues. Thus it is the need of the hour to draw attention towards this issue as ignoring it further will only make the problem worse.
World Food Day is dedicated to send a message to all agencies, governments, businesses, and individuals to take action against the increasing number of people who do not have access to food and the impact of malnutrition on the global economy.
World Food Day : Theme
The theme for this year's World Food Day is “Grow, Nourish, Sustain. Together. Our actions are our future.”
The 2020 theme accurately highlights the relevance of collective action and ways to bring sustainability in terms of food resources by working together in unison.
Food and COVID-19
During the COVID-19 pandemic, large numbers of people have been rendered jobless and even homeless, because of which they do not have access to basic necessities including food.
Due to COVID-19, between 83 and 132 million people could fall in the hunger trap. The number of hungry people has increased by 10 million since 2019, reaching nearly 690 million.
The director of FAO, Qu Dongyu, states that the Covid-19 pandemic “threatens the livelihood of millions around the world. "He called it the “biggest challenge since World War II.”
According to him the only difference between 1945 and 2020 is that the production of food is now adequate, but issues like climate change and international conflicts have hampered the distribution of food and that it will take contribution from all the sectors of the society to fight world hunger now.
Celebrating World Food Day in 2020
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has released a commemorative coin of Rs.75 denomination to mark the 75th Anniversary of Food and Agriculture Organization.
PM Modi acknowledged and appreciated those who are working with dedication and devotion to eradicate malnutrition from the world.
Congratulating the farmers of India, Modi stated that, "While the whole world is struggling with corona, Indian farmers broke the record of last year's production this time too. Several steps have been taken to ensure that farmers get one and a half times the cost as MSP.”
PM Modi has further dedicated 17 new bio-fortified varieties of 8 crops to the nation.
The FAO recognizes food heroes today. “Anyone can be a food hero! Who is yours?”, they tweeted.
Anyone can be a food hero! Who is yours? pic.twitter.com/LyBVxarZIK
— FAO (@FAO) October 16, 2020
This year's Nobel Peace Prize was also awarded to the UN's World Food Programme to recognize the right of all people to food.
The FAO has also organized a digital event on today’s occasion.
This year we urge you to be more mindful of your food resources and pledge to try and close the gap between the people who take food for granted and those who go without it.