Four Initiatives to Improve People’s Diets

Bio and Bio stores | Report Syndication


Graziano da Silva, the Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), delivered an important speech at the opening of The Future of Food, an international symposium that took place in Rome in June 2019.

Graziano put forward four (04) measures that could improve people’s diets.

1. Public policies and laws should be made so as to  protect healthy diets and encourage the private sector to produce healthier food. The governments should also ensure that these policies and laws are made with proper incentives. For examples, taxes should be imposed on unhealthy food products, the food product should contain easily understandable and more comprehensive labels, and restrictions should put in place for advertising of certain food product and in particular for children’s food products.

2. The governments should work for improving access to and promotion of local, fresh food by promoting the consumption such food. This could be possible with the creation of local circuits of food production and consumption.

Bio & Bio stores | Report Syndication
“New shop concept of bio&bio stores” by brigada (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)

3. The international trade agreements should be designed in a way so as to influence food systems in a positive way, as ultra-processed food tend to fare better in international trade. The ultra-processed food is mainly based on artificial ingredients, containing high levels of saturated fats, refined sugars, salt and chemical additives. Hence, ultra-processed food is one of the main drivers of the global pandemic of obesity and micronutrient deficiency. According to Graziano, food products that are considered safe are not necessarily healthy and, hence, efforts should be made to bring healthy food to the table.

4. Graziano believes, “the transformation of food systems starts with healthy soils, healthy seeds, and sustainable agricultural practices. The whole food system needs to be readdressed.”

It appears that the four aforementioned measures that the FAO Director-General spoke about could well improve people’s diets. The governments from across the world should, therefore, seriously and urgently take the necessary steps to start implementing these measures without further delay.