News

UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food Calls for New Deal for Agriculture

5

June 2008: Olivier de Schutter, UN Special Rapporteur on the right to food,

reminded participants at the High-Level Conference on World Food Security,

which convened from 3-5 June 2008 in Rome, Italy, that the right to food

imposes obligations on countries vis-à-vis populations outside of their

territory. Noting the need to protect the most vulnerable segments of

populations, he called for an institutional framework to: identify emerging

threats at the earliest possible stage; improve coordination among ministries

and levels of government; and ensure participation, particularly of the most

food insecure segments of population.

He

suggested a “new deal for agriculture…” to “make up for the short-sighted

policies of the past.” He further explained that private sector concentration

in agribusiness is widening the spread between world and domestic commodity

prices, leading to a decline in developing countries' claim on value added.

Noting the urgent need for international cooperation, he said the current food

crisis is also an opportunity to “rethink the global food system which has

exhibited many weaknesses.” [Statement]

[FAO

Conference website] [IISD RS

coverage]