Five Principles Guide Approach to Food Security

Posted by DipNote Bloggers
September 27, 2009

Yesterday, Secretary Clinton spoke with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon about food security. The Secretary said:"It is a great pleasure for me to be joining Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and all of you to exchange ideas and join forces against one of the most urgent threats facing our world: chronic hunger, and all of the consequences that it causes, some of which we saw in the short film leading into our conference today.

I wish that we had time to acknowledge every head of state and government minister here today, as well as all the representatives from foundations, non-governmental organizations, universities, and the private sector. But there are far too many of you -- which is the good news, that we have such an extraordinary turnout. And so, let me join with the Secretary-General in welcoming and thanking all of you for taking time out late on a Saturday afternoon to be here.

Yesterday, at the Clinton Global Initiative, I discussed the principles that the Secretary-General referred to: how we are going to fight hunger together and begin to alleviate and decrease poverty through sustainable agricultural development. We want to make sure that enough food is available, and that people have the resources to purchase it. That is a key foreign policy objective of President Obama and our administration. This is an issue that affects all of us, because food security is about economic, environmental, and national security for our individual homelands and the world.

As the Secretary-General mentioned, five principles were embraced at the G-8 summit in Italy. And these principles will guide our efforts.

The first of these principles is the need to invest in country-led plans. Few people know better the complex obstacles that hinder a country's food supply than the people who actually live and work in that country. And we will have the greatest chance at success if we pursue partnership, not patronage.

Second, we will address the underlying causes of hunger, by investing in everything from research to better seeds to insurance programs for small farmers to large-scale infrastructure projects that create sustainable, systemic change. And we will put women at the heart of our efforts, because most farmers of small holdings in the world are women.

Third, we will improve coordination at every level. Too often in the past, we have worked in silos, duplicating some efforts and overlooking others. Now we want to bring every partner from every sector together around a virtual one table across the world to discuss each country's plan, and then devise a way of executing it.

Fourth, we will leverage the benefits of multilateral institutions to support and help fulfill the country plans, because these institutions have the reach and resources to do more than any single country could do.

And, fifth, we pledge a long-term commitment, based on accountability. Now, we know that this is going to take years, and even decades, before we reach the finish line. But we have to stay committed. Because what we have seen, as illustrated in the film, is that international support for agriculture has declined, while contributions to emergency aid have increased.

We will continue, of course, to invest in the crises and the emergencies, but we want to begin to try to alleviate the crises and the emergencies by once again enabling people to feed themselves. Now, together, these principles represent an approach based on investments in our collective future. And they will help us achieve broad-based results that last."

Read the Secretary's full remarks here. Secretary Clinton and Secretary-General Ban will act to move this agenda forward in the coming months. To catalyze coordination and collaboration, while ensuring accountability, they have introduced a proposal titled “Partnering For Food Security: Moving Forward.” This is designed as a point of reference for diverse stakeholders as they align their efforts and amplify their actions.

Related Entry: Global Food Security: U.S. Commitment to Action

Comments

Comments

Acai
|
Washington, USA
September 28, 2009

Acai in Canada writes:

I think that the second point is probably the most important to understanding how to tackle this problem over the long-term. More study needs to be done to find the underlying root as to what causes wide-scale hunger, and hopefully this will lead to finding new and better solutions that can be implemented effectively.

RANDRIAMAMPIONONA S.
|
Madagascar
September 29, 2009

Solomon in Madagascar writes:

Mr President of the UNITED SATES OF THE AMERICA
Mr Prime Ministre of the U.S.A
Mr Senator Bill Clinton
Mm Secretary Clinton
The all Defence and People of the U.S.A

To be the Security Defence and diplomacy and polititc International for the U.S.A are enssure and stabilize. for the event in Africa contunent to be the Copeartion me and of the Defence UN and Defence UA of peace are not stop confurme and contunie us work for deliver the true Peace and development in Africa contunent.

For Event problem nuclear in Iran and Irak we not take us deceide launch us atack for punish he two country use for we can confurme stabilize us gestion Politic and diplomacy on Economic Security Defence in the world,because I'm on time building us Gestion of Negociation of peace for must arrange the Problem Nuclear in Iran and Irak.

Also we wait us time most for take us deceide and launch us World programe for Against Hard terrorism and Against Hard War Nuclear after there is not respect us Negociation of pece and not accept closed the all center and usine manufacture the produict energy and Armament nucler in the he two Nation.

And I'm hope for the us all system plan need for Development and remove the all standard living for the all peole U.S.A are not stop and there is to became very Hard and approache take the number on place in the world.

Mr President I'm confurme the Nation and City for Organize us First meeting of table round of the discution for the us Organoization THE PEACE WORLD in the World are already build and there is Organize in Antananarivo-Madagascar-United states of the Africa I'm on time road for finish us time and date preci for we can tobeging and when there is finish I'm must launch invitation for you Mr President ,because you and the U.S.A United Defence of Peace are the hope and future and strong for the us Organization The Peace World and the all people Generation in of the United States of the Africa.

Thank very much
The God us protege
Your Coperation
R. SOLOMON
THE PEACE WORLD
IVORY-ANTSIRABE-MADAGASCAR
UNITED STATES OF THE AFRICA

william.wondergem
|
Netherlands
September 28, 2009

William W. in the Netherlands writes:

Grainprices etc. will rise dramaticly in the near future, so a loth of people who went to the towns might return to the countryside for planting and harvesting!

Joel
|
New Mexico, USA
September 29, 2009

Joel in New Mexico writes:

As Secretary Clinton pretends to address hunger worldwide, the State Department is creating a famine in Central America. It has covertly supported a coup in Honduras, creating a dictatorship that today suspended the parts of the Constitution that forbid arbitrary arrest, indefinite detention, limitation of freedom of association and censorship of the media.

Also today the dictatorship silenced the two major electronic media outlets that provide alternative voices, Radio Globo and Channel 36. And yesterday, the dictatorship expelled OAS diplomats who had come to try to negotiate a solution.

Today, the U.S. took off the mask behind which it hid its intentions. Its ambassador to the OAS, Lewis Anselem, took the occasion to scold Manuel Zelaya for having returned to Honduras! The dictatorship is exultant at receiving such open support from the U.S. Department of State.

And here is how the coup connects to famine: the Zelaya government, for all its faults, had succeeded in improving agricultural reserves. Yet the harvest this year is expected to be poor thanks to global warming, and the convulsions into which the coup has sent the nation are making this any worse. Most important, the dictatorship is completely corrupt and incompetent. It is boasting that reserves are ample and that the harvest will be wonderful. It has recklessly sold off reserves, further depressing incentives for farmers.

Honduras is desperately poor. The majority of people live from day to day. The likelihood of a humanitarian disaster is rising daily. I urge everyone to contact humanitarian agencies such as the UN food program, Oxfam, Catholic Relief Services and donate as much as you can, earmarked for the disaster which the U.S. Department of State is creating.

JOE
|
Tennessee, USA
September 29, 2009

Joe in Tennessee writes:

What is missing is the economic element again, as an example, with no disrespect intended toward a Democratic Capitalist ideology. I like money, but I love democracy!

When my daughter resided in Margate Florida, I went grocery shopping. I was looking forward toward purchasing some fresh vegetables from the many truck farms nearby; especially given, it was late August early September. While there was an abundance of fruits and vegetables, few were from Florida, even the large tomatoes were from South Africa. Most fruits and vegetables were from out of the country. I asked the produce manager why there were no fresh vegetables, etc, his responses was simple: They go to the highest price yield terminals on the East Coast: Baltimore, Phila., NY, Boston etc. http://www.todaymarket.com/ -- for those familiar with it. Still, there was an abundance of produce available and therein lies the difference.

The tomatoes grown in South Africa for export and profit does not help the people 100 miles from there who are eating roots does it? If the people are growing for export and profit in these needy countries and nearby people are starving, does that not indicate a problem which needs to be addressed? Self sufficiency should not mean isolationism or Nationalism.

The Independent International community's need for security, have placed a dependency on countries which can be self sufficient were it not for misplaced greed of leadership; which is enticed, by intent, resulting in the overall needs of the people not being addressed.

When Profit is being placed above needs of the people within a country, it is not a democracy or socialist form of government....because the people are being placed secondary and not primary. That is not the intent of our Democratic Republic,nor is it the intent of Socialism..

What then is the correct governing form needed to feed people since both of these have been bypassed for decades?

Albu
|
Spain
September 29, 2009

Albu in Spain writes:

Yes, the second point is very important. Second, we will address the underlying causes of hunger, by investing in everything from research to better seeds to insurance programs for small farmers to large-scale infrastructure projects that create sustainable, systemic change.

Jack
|
New Hampshire, USA
September 29, 2009

Jack in New Hampshire writes:

I'm glad to see a post on global food security. While I agree with all five measures outlined above, it seems that one of our guiding principals in increasing food security should be to pay strict attention to this problem during the seasons when famine and drought have receded.

My time spent working in Ethiopia a few years back showed me that food insecurity concerns usually bubble to the surface when the drought/famine is quickly approaching - often, too late to make a measurable difference. When it's too late, donor countries are often left to decide how many metric tons of grain they will contribute. I recall the U.S. donating heartily to combat Ethiopian famine, but I always wondered if the Ethiopian government (and donor governments) had prioritized the issue sooner, more lives could have been saved.

To combat chronic food insecurity, donor countries like the U.S. need to encourage better agricultural policies when the rains are falling and the rivers are flowing. If we continue to wait until the riverbeds dry up, we'll only find ourselves running a few steps behind this elusive enemy.

Best,

Jack

Zharkov
|
United States
October 1, 2009

Zharkov in U.S.A. writes:

The root cause of world hunger is probably a lack of capitalism, not on the part of the poor, but often because the people who govern them have a socialist mind-set.

The government of Iraq, for example, was reported to be bound to a contract with Monsanto to import and use only GMO seeds. Native Iraqi plant seeds resistant to drought and pests are rapidly disappearing and replaced by GMO seeds which are not, according to news reports.

Consumers, naturally, do not want to eat someone else's lab experiment, and in any contest between GMO food and organic native-species food, the organic side would win.

When governments induce farmers to grow certain crops, or use only certain seeds, the capitalist system cannot operate and competition dies along with the food supply.

The U.N. repeatedly waits until a famine is well underway before supplying food, but as long as the U.N. operates as a socialist system of last resort, they might instead supply good seeds, trees, and farming methods appropriate to that region before starvation begins. Many famines are preventable if people are free to farm their land and given sufficient seed capital to begin.

palgye
|
South Korea
October 14, 2009

Palgye in South Korea writes:

Food supply, different way...

The dignity contents does not understand well, could not but, the food supply of the world excepted some nation until now and almost did a grain major and the petroleum with character and thinks became accomplished. Being many and good point and side effect is but the human being from being hungry, makes escape and that in the indebtedness to be a system which makes do as a favor me is living thinks only, Specific point of view, the demand surpasses a supply from the specific area and sometimes, thinks that causes a many problem point. and even, when the problem the inside is solved, economy again resurrection.

In order to make must select a new market and an investment method, then now in method thinks from food part that the capital where the problem point will occur is. Cultivation from the method which disposes removed the forest from the place which is possible and the petroleum with character one whole world about under integrated managing appropriately exuviated, Thinks global. But I think, add to local.Well does not dispose the method of the now is thought in the food crisis which occurs a while ago from the nation of Africa that a little there is a problem. not incorrect but just have a some problems...

Decides the area regionally will be able to save for emergency the farm belt and the food develops and the new demand occurs in the near place from now to develop, disposes in that demand, the efficiency where is not the petroleum daytime the solar storehouse, thinks to the place where the system and the ocean solar heat and wind power with energy source are near establishing a replacement of salt water by fresh water equipment one method.Asks and thinks the thing which more the tribe will become more. From industrial setup of present time.
Shortly simply thought arrangement. Tried to do.

P.S. Luckily India and Africa (the Middle East) the climate is tropical characteristic to...

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