Sustainable diets and biodiversity PDF, the book presents the current state of thought on the common path of sustainable diets and biodiversity. The articles contained herein were presented at the International Scientific Symposium “Biodiversity and Sustainable Diets: United Against Hunger” organized jointly by FAO and Bioversity International, held at FAO, in Rome, from 3 to 5 November 2010.
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The Symposium served as a platform for reaching a consensus definition of “sustainable diets” and to further develop this concept with food and nutrition security, and the realization of the Millennium Development Goals, as objectives.
In the early 1980s, the notion of “sustainable diets” was proposed, with dietary recommendations which would result in healthier environments as well as healthier consumers. But with the over-riding goal of feeding a hungry world, little attention was paid to the sustainability of agro-ecological zones, the sustainable diets’ concept was neglected for many years.
Regardless of the many successes of agriculture during the last three decades, it is clear that food systems, and diets, are not sustainable. FAO data show that one billion people suffer from hunger, while even more people are overweight or obese.
In both groups, there is a high prevalence of micronutrient malnutrition. In spite of many efforts, the nutrition problems of the world are escalating. Improving nutrition through better balanced nutritious diets can also reduce the environmental impact of dietary choices.
Therefore, a shift to more sustainable diets would trigger upstream effects on food production (e.g. diversification), processing chain and food consumption.
A working group was convened as part of the Symposium and a definition was debated, built upon previous efforts of governments (e.g., the Sustainability Commission of the UK), UN agencies (FAO/Bioversity Technical Workshop and Biodiversity and Sustainable Diets), and others.
The definition was presented in a plenary session of the Symposium and accepted by the participants, as follows: Sustainable Diets are those diets with low environmental impacts that contribute to food and nutrition security and to a healthy life for present and future generations.
Sustainable diets are protective and respectful of biodiversity and ecosystems, culturally acceptable, accessible, economically fair and affordable; nutritionally adequate, safe and healthy; while optimizing natural and human resources.
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