Development 57.2 'Nutrition' is out now!
Volume 57.2 of Development - the quarterly journal of the Society for International Development - was produced in the lead-up to the Second International Conference on Nutrition (ICN2)* and explores the relationship between nutrition, food security and sustainable agriculture.
Contrary to the dominant approach to treat nutrition as a technical matter and delink it from its intimate relations with the nature of food systems and its broader social, economic and political determinants, Development 57.2 argues that nutrition is a profoundly political issue. Not only because of its deep implications on people's rights, livelihoods and health, but also because of the consequences that choosing among alternative paths to nutrition may have on the nature and pattern of globalization.
The nutrition debate reflects in itself a serious struggle unfolding today: on one side a food system dominated by the influence of corporations and international agreements privileging uneven terms of trade and finance, and corporate grabbing of land and other resources, over human rights; on the other side, a small-scale and family food production system - based on food sovereignty, women's empowerment, biodiversity, ecological principles and economic pluralism - that is getting increasingly weakened and impoverished despite it being responsible for feeding the 70 % of world's population.
This journal issue highlights that nutrition is a multidimensional issue, deeply embedded in many domains of life and emphasizes the human right approach to adequate food and nutrition as stated by the 'CSO Vision Statement on Nutrition' produced by public interest civil society organizations before ICN2. The human right to adequate food and nutrition can only be realized if women's, peasants', and workers' rights, sexual and reproductive rights as well as the right to health, safe water and sanitation, among others, are fulfilled. This obliges national governments to protect the national policy space and respond - as duty bearers - to 'right-holders' rather than to 'stakeholders'.
Development 57.2 offers a panoramic overview of the nutrition debate as well as a close up analysis of local practices and alternatives. The authors - Vandana Shiva, Olivier de Shutter, Jomo Kwame Sundaram, Tim Lang, Flavio Valente, Cinzia Scaffidi, Xaviera Cabada, Andrea Ferrante, Michael Krawinkel to mention a few of them - speak from diverse experiences and perspectives, but all agree that nutrition is a culturally, politically, economically and ecologically embedded challenge.
* The Second International Conference on Nutrition, ICN2 - http://www.fao.org/about/meetings/icn2/en/ - is an intergovernmental conference organized by the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) and the World Health Organization (WHO) to address malnutrition in all its forms. It was held in Rome (Italy) from 19-21 November 2014, twenty-two years after the first one in 1992. The outcome documents are: the Rome Declaration on Nutrition and the Framework for Action.