the participants in the World Food Day Colloquium held in
believe that it is indeed possible to end world hunger by the year 2000.
More than ever before, humanity possesses the resources, capital,
technology and knowledge to promote development and to feed all people,
both now and in the foreseeable future. By the year 2000 the entire world
population can be fed and nourished.
a modest expenditure is needed each year - a tiny fraction of total
military expenditure, which amounts to about $650 billion a year. What
is required is the political will to put first things first and to give
absolute priority to freedom from hunger. This is the challenge which
faces peoples and their governments. We call upon them to meet the
challenge and to start now.
recognizing the complexities and difficulties of the task, we emphasize
that hope can replace despair and positive action replace negative
are aware that the international scene is characterized by deep recession,
mounting unemployment and increasing tensions. While we do not
underestimate the seriousness of difficulties facing industrialized
countries, the plight of most developing countries is even more
dramatic. Stagnation or decline in growth rates, falling commodity
prices, adverse terms of trade, high interest rates and growing external
debt aggravate the problems of poverty and hunger.
has been a dangerous decline in international cooperation for
development, precisely at the time when such cooperation is most needed.
Retreat from multilateral development cooperation and strong trends
towards bilateralism or even unilateral action accentuate the division on
world, a phenomenon which has led to major world conflicts in the past.
somber background we took stock of the food
situation of developing countries. While some have succeeded in increasing
food production faster than population, many more have not been able to do
so and hunger and malnutrition continue to afflict hundreds of millions
of men, women and children.
central importance of food stands endorsed on many occasions, most
categorically and emphatically in Article 11 of the Covenant of
Economic, Social and Cultural Rights which states that: "Parties to
the present Covenant, recognizing the fundamental right of everyone to
be free from hunger, shall take, individually and through international
cooperation, the measures, including specific programmes,
which are needed to improve methods of production, conservation and
distribution of food...".
are convinced by the evidence assembled by FAO in its valuable study
"Agriculture: Toward 2000" and by other authoritative
studies that a continuation of present policies and attitudes could
prolong the shame of chronic and widespread hunger into the twenty-first
century. That is why this challenge must be met.
prospect of persistent and ever-growing inequality between and within
nations, of which hunger is one manifestation, can lead to violence and
political destabilization, as evidenced by recent experience.
objective solemnly declared in 1974 by the World Food Conference of eradicating
hunger and malnutrition by 1985 is far from being achieved. We feel that
even the more modest objective adopted in 1980 by the UN General Assembly
for the Third United Nations Development Decade of eliminating hunger and
malnutrition "as soon as possible and certainly by the end of this
century" may not be realized
if present trends continue. We note with satisfaction that international agreement exists as to
the priority character and huge dimensions of the world food problem and
that basic guidelines for national and international action have been
accepted by the international community. What is needed now is action in
line with commitments and pledges made or reiterated at successive
serious hunger problem in South and Southeast Asia and the dramatically
deteriorating food situation in sub-Saharan
are convinced that a major and concerted global effort to accelerate
growth in developing countries, especially the less developed among them
is urgently needed. A much higher priority to food production, as well as
sustained efforts towards greater equity, is in the common interest of
all people and all nations and is the only long-term solution.
of the momentum of growth in the industrialized world through appropriate
policies is urgently needed. We are persuaded that accelerated growth in
developing countries must play an important role in support of sound
expansionary policies of the world economy.
urge, as an overall target, that food production in developing countries
should be at least doubled over the next two decades so as to make them
self-reliant in basic foods. Their Governments should define or review
existing food policy goals, assign high priority to food and agriculture
and, in order to meet growing demands and redress imbalances, allocate
sufficient resources to the sector.
should be progressively modernized and intensified on the basis of sustained
research efforts- national, regional and inter national - focusing
on the productivity of food crops. Adequate
incentives, including appropriate pricing policies, must be provided.
Particular stress must be laid on efficient water use and expansion of
irrigation as a basis for stabilizing and increasing food production.
This must be undertaken in ways which conserve natural resources in
agriculture, forestry and fisheries and avoid ecological damage which
cannot be made good except at very great cost.
and agricultural development cannot and should not be looked upon in isolation
from the whole process of social and economic development. Even high rates
of growth in developing countries have not solved the problems of hunger
and malnutrition. The growth process needs a new orientation to attack
the social problems of those people who have been benefiting only little
in recent years from general economic progress.
unemployment and poverty go together. The rural landless and the urban
jobless should be provided with opportunities for productive employment
through higher rates of investment. The purchasing power of the poor
must be increased, for instance, by subsidies and direct food distribution
essential requirements include equitable access to land, water and other
natural resources; people's participation including integration of women
in rural development; access to inputs, markets, services and
education, training and extension; expansion of income and employment opportunities
through rural work programmes and non-farm activities to counter the
prevalence of hunger in rural areas.
strongly urge that the Declaration of Principles and the Programme
of Action adopted by the World Conference on Agrarian Reform and Rural
Development of July 1979 should be implemented with vigor by developing countries
supported fully by industrialized
all countries can be self-sufficient in food. Through sub-regional,
regional and inter-regional cooperation developing countries can achieve
the objective of collective self-reliance.
The elimination of hunger and malnutrition is an essential and
integral part of the New International Economic Order. We earnestly hope,
therefore, that negotiations will be successfully concluded at the present
session of the General Assembly
WORLD DECLARATION ON NUTRITION
We. the Ministers and the Plenipotentiaries representing 159
states and the
Despite appreciable worldwide improvements in life expectancy,
adult literacy and nutritional status, we all view with the deepest
concern the unacceptable fact that about 780 million people in
developing countries, 20 percent of their combined population, still do
not have access to enough food to meet their basic daily needs for
We are especially distressed by the high prevalence and increasing
numbers of malnourished children under five years of age in parts of
Africa, Asia and Latin America and the
We call on the United Nations to consider urgently the issue of
declaring an International Decade of Food and Nutrition, within existing
structures and available resources, in order to give additional emphasis
to achieving the objectives of this World Declaration on Nutrition. Such
consideration should give particular emphasis to the food and nutrition
problems of Africa, and of Asia, Latin America and the
We recognize that poverty and the lack of education, which are
often the effects of underdevelopment, are the primary causes of hunger
and under-nutrition. There are poor people in most societies who do not
have adequate access to food, safe water and sanitation, health services
and education, which are the basic requirements for nutritional
We commit ourselves to ensuring that development programmes and policies lead to a sustainable improvement
in human welfare, are mindful of the environment and are conducive to
better nutrition and health for present and future generations. The
multifunctional roles of agriculture, especially with regard to food security,
nutrition, sustainable agriculture and the conservation of natural resources,
are of particular importance in this context. We must implement at family,
household, community, frames, we pledge to make all efforts to eliminate
before the end of this decade:
• famine and
and nutritional deficiency diseases in communities affected by natural
and man-made disasters;
• iodine and
vitamin A deficiencies.
also pledge to reduce substantially within this decade:
and widespread chronic hunger:
nutrition , especially among children, women and the aged:
important micronutrient deficiencies, including iron;
communicable and non-communicable diseases;
• social and
other impediments to optimal breast-feeding;
sanitation and poor hygiene, including unsafe drinking-water.
We resolve to promote active cooperation among governments,
multilateral, bilateral and non-governmental organizations, the private
sector, communities and individuals to eliminate progressively the
causes that lead to the scandal of hunger and all forms of malnutrition
in the midst of abundance.
With a clear appreciation of the intrinsic value of human life
and the dignity it commands, we adopt the attached Plan of Action for
Nutrition and affirm our determination to revise or prepare, before the
end of 1994, our national plans of action, including attainable goals and
measurable targets, based on the principles and relevant strategies in
the attached Plan of Action for Nutrition. We pledge to implement it.
NUTRITION COALS OF THE FOURTH UNITED NATIONS
States must give effect to agreements already reached to make all efforts
to meet four goals during the decade:
To eliminate starvation and death caused by famine;
To reduce malnutrition and mortality among children
To reduce chronic hunger tangibly;
To eliminate major nutritional diseases.
COALS OF THE
be reached by the year 2000)
Reduction in severe, as well as moderate malnutrition among under-5
children by half of 1990 levels;
Reduction of the rate of low birth weight (2.5 kg or less) to less
than 10 percent;
Reduction of iron deficiency anemia in women by one-third of the
Virtual elimination of iodine deficiency disorders;
Virtual elimination of vitamin A de- , efficiency
and its consequences, including blindness;
Empowerment of all women to breast-feed their children exclusively
for four to six months and to continue breast-feeding, with complementary
food, well into the i second year;
Growth promotion and its regular monitoring to be institutionalized
in all countries by the end of the 1990s;
(h) Dissemination of knowledge and supporting services to increase
food production to ensure household food security.
the Heads of State and Government,1 or our representatives,
gathered at the World Food Summit at the invitation of the Food and
Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, reaffirm the right of
everyone to have access to safe and nutritious food, consistent with the
right to adequate food and the fundamental right of everyone to be free
pledge our political will and our common and national commitment to
achieving food security for all and to an ongoing effort to eradicate
hunger in all countries, with an immediate view to reducing the number of
undernourished people to half their present level no later than 201 5.
consider it intolerable that more than 800 million people throughout the
world, and particularly in developing countries, do not have enough food
to meet their basic nutritional needs. This situation is unacceptable.
Food supplies have increased substantially, but constraints on access to
food and continuing inadequacy of household and national incomes to
purchase food, instability of supply and demand, as well as natural and
man-made disasters, prevent basic food needs from being fulfilled. The
problems of hunger and food insecurity have global dimensions and are
likely to persist, and even increase dramatically in some regions, unless
urgent, determined and concerted action is taken, given the anticipated
increase in the world's population and the stress on natural resources.
reaffirm that a peaceful, stable and enabling political, social and
economic environment is the essential foundation which will enable States
to give adequate priority to food security and poverty eradication.
Democracy, promotion and protection of all human rights and fundamental
freedoms, including the right to development, and the full and equal
participation of men and women are essential for achieving sustainable
food security for all.
is a major cause of food insecurity and
sustainable progress in poverty eradication is critical to improve
access to food. Conflict, terrorism, corruption and environmental
degradation also contribute significantly to food insecurity. Increased
food production, including staple food, must be undertaken. This should
happen within the framework of sustainable management of natural
resources, elimination of unsustainable patterns of consumption and
production, particularly in industrialized countries, and early
stabilization of the world population. We acknowledge the fundamental
contribution to food security by women, particularly in rural areas of
developing countries, and the need to ensure equality between men and
women. Revitalization of rural areas must also be a priority to enhance
social stability and help redress the excessive rate of rural-urban
migration confronting many countries.
emphasize the urgency of taking action now to fulfill our responsibility
to achieve food security for present and future generations. Attaining
food security is a complex task for which the primary responsibility rests
with individual governments. They have to develop an enabling
environment and have policies that ensure peace, as well as social,
political and economic stability and equity and gender equality. We
express our deep concern over the persistence of hunger which, on such a
scale, constitutes a threat both to national societies and, through a
variety of ways, to the stability of the international community itself.
Within the global framework, governments should also cooperate actively
with one another and with United Nations organizations, financial
institutions, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations, and
public and private sectors, on programmes directed toward the
achievement of food security for all.
should not be used as an instrument for political and economic pressure.
We reaffirm the importance of international cooperation and solidarity as
well as the necessity of refraining from unilateral measures not in accordance
with the international law and the Charter of the United Nations and
that endanger food security.
recognize the need to adopt policies conducive to investment in human resource
development, research and infrastructure for achieving food security. We
must encourage generation of employment and incomes, and promote equitable
access to productive and financial resources. We agree that trade is a
key element in achieving food security. We agree to pursue food trade
and overall trade policies that will encourage our producers and consumers
to utilize available resources in an economically sound and sustainable
manner. We recognize the importance for food security of sustainable
agriculture, fisheries, forestry and rural development in low as well
as high potential areas. We acknowledge the fundamental role of farmers,
fishers, foresters, indigenous people and their communities, and all
other people involved in the food sector, and of their organizations,
supported by effective research and extension, in attaining food
security. Our sustainable development policies will promote full participation
and empowerment of people, especially women, an equitable distribution
of income, access to health care and education, and opportunities for
youth. Particular attention should be given to those who cannot produce or
procure enough food for an adequate diet, including those affected by
war, civil strife, natural disaster or climate related ecological
changes. We are conscious of the need for urgent action to combat pests,
drought, and natural resource degradation including desertification,
over fishing and erosion of biological diversity.
are determined to make efforts to mobilize, and optimize the allocation
and utilization of, technical and financial resources from all sources,
including external debt relief for developing countries, to reinforce
national actions to implement sustainable food security policies.
that the multifaceted character of food security necessitates concerted national
action, and effective international efforts
to supplement and reinforce national action, we make the following commitments:
• we will
ensure an enabling political, social, and economic environment designed
to create the best conditions for the eradication of poverty and for durable
peace, based on full and equal participation of women and men, which is
most conducive to achieving sustainable food security for all;
• we will
implement policies aimed at eradicating poverty and inequality and
improving physical and economic access by all, at all times, to
sufficient, nutritionally adequate and safe food and its effective
• we will
pursue participatory and sustainable food, agriculture, fisheries, forestry
and rural development policies and practices in high and low potential
areas, which are essential to adequate and reliable food supplies at the
household, national, regional and global levels, and combat pests,
drought and desertification, considering the multifunctional character of
• we will
strive to ensure that food, agricultural trade and overall trade policies
are conducive to fostering food security for all through a fair and market-oriented
world trade system;
• we will
endeavor to prevent and be prepared for natural disasters and man-made
emergencies and to meet transitory and emergency food requirements in
ways that encourage recovery, rehabilitation, development and a capacity
to satisfy future needs;
• we will
promote optimal allocation and use of public and private investments to
foster human resources, sustainable food, agriculture, fisheries and
forestry systems, and rural development, in high and low potential areas;
• we will
implement, monitor, and follow-up this Plan of Action at all levels in
cooperation with the international community.
We pledge our actions and support to implement the World Food
Summit Plan of Action.