Nourishing the Planet

The international community needs to change the way it views reducing hunger and poverty, says a new report by the Worldwatch Institute. 

In mid-January, Worldwatch released its report State of the World 2011: Innovations that Nourish the Planet, which spotlights successful agricultural innovations and unearths major successes in preventing food waste, building resilience to climate change, and strengthening farming in cities. The report provides a roadmap for increased agricultural investment and more-efficient ways to alleviate global hunger and poverty. Drawing from the world's leading agricultural experts and from hundreds of innovations that are already working on the ground, the report outlines 15 proven, environmentally sustainable prescriptions. 

State of the World 2011 comes at a time when many global hunger and food security initiatives—such as the Obama administration's Feed the Future program, the Global Agriculture and Food Security Program (GAFSP), the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), and the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP)—can benefit from new insight into environmentally sustainable projects that are already working to alleviate hunger and poverty. 

"The international community has been neglecting entire segments of the food system in its efforts to reduce hunger and poverty," said Danielle Nierenberg, co-director of Worldwatch's Nourishing the Planet project. "The solutions won't necessarily come from producing more food, but from changing what children eat in schools, how foods are processed and marketed, and what sorts of food businesses we are investing in." 

Roughly 40 percent of the food currently produced worldwide is wasted before it is consumed, according to Brian Halweil, Nourishing the Planet co-director. Approximately 925 million people are undernourished. 

Click here to purchase the State of the World 2011 report and here to see its supporting material.