IBFAN is a member of Food and Nutrition working group of the Civil Society Mechanism (CSM) of the Committee on World Food Security (CFS). We  regularly contribute to the deliberations of  the CSM-CFS through the WG. Presently, the CFS is developing a voluntary guideline (VG) for the Food Systems and Nutrition (since 2018). Along with partners from India and other regions, I attended the European regional consultation on the Zero Draft of these Guidelines in Hungary and spoke about the risks of multi-stakeholderism at the CFS in Rome in October.
Going through the  text that covers many important issues, you will find that there are many good things that reflect the concerns of civil society.  We are pleased that breastfeeding, the International Code of marketing of breastfeeding and maternity protection etc are well referred to and reflect IBFAN’s suggestions.  But it will be important to follow the development to defend the good parts and strengthen the sections that are weak.  I was especially concerned about the section on governance and the  promotion multi-stakeholder partnerships.  This  has been improved somewhat but problems remain and the problematic Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) and ‘biofortification‘ (1) are still promoted.

Draft One is now available for comment. Here is a link along to a message from the OEWG Chair, Dr Liliane Ortega,  the  next steps that are outlined in the  workplan and other background documents and information.  This is the  Food Systems and Nutrition section of the Committee on Food Security(CFS) working space.Suggestions on how to improve it are requested by Wednesday 5 February. Inputs should be sent to cfs@fao.org

There will be a meeting to discuss the Guidelines in FAO in Rome  on 29 January (9.30-12.30 and 14.00-17.00, Red Room, FAO).



(1) See our Statement on the last  Codex meeting  http://www.babymilkaction.org/archives/23295

  • Biofortification: After many years wasted on this highly promotional and misleading definition (that included all forms of agriculture including Genetic Modification) the work was discontinued. In an embarrassing conclusion, no Member State except Zimbabwe spoke in its defence. Since IBFAN has spoken many times about Biofortification, [viii] just one observer, the National Health Federation, commented:  “while bio-fortification of foods could be beneficial, a much larger problem exists from the significant decline in nutritional content of existing farm produce due to poor agricultural practices in both developed and developing countries and that this should be addressed.”


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