Category Archives: Food Rights

News on Food Rights

Food, a right for all.

Welcome to the first roundup of world-wide news on Food-Rights and Food security.

1) Announcing the Community for Zero Hunger: Mobilizing a Multi-Sectoral Response to the UN Zero Hunger Challenge:

There are more than 870 million people who are hungry and malnourished around the world. As we look toward 2050, we will have a third more mouths to feed, which will further strain systems, the environment and communities. Building sustainable, specific and multi-sectoral responses to ending hunger, and creating a food- and nutrition-secure world are urgent. Read more

2) The Dangers of Agricultural Subsidies is they never reach the people for whom they were created.

3) Each year, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations releases a report on the State of Food and Agriculture, covering important issues related to global food systems. Here is the 2013 report of the FAO which addresses the issue of food systems and malnutrition.

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Analysis: The right to food in Bangladesh

Floating Guava market. Jhalokathi

Floating Guava market. Jhalokathi. Image by Emdadul Islam Bitu. Copyright Grow.

DHAKA, 22 January 2013 (IRIN) – NGOs in Bangladesh are pushing for a constitutional amendment to guarantee the legal right to access food, or a food security “framework law” that will hold the state liable for any scarcity.

Despite the government laying out its commitment in 2012 to food security “for all people of the country at all times” at least 31 percent of the population still lack nutritious life-sustaining food.

According to the most recently published National Demographic and Health Survey (DHS) from 2011, 40 percent of children are too short for their age (known medically as “stunting”), a harbinger of lifelong development delays and one of the leading causes globally of brain damage. Some 36 percent of the surveyed children in Bangladesh under five were underweight for their age (showing signs of stunting, and/or “wasting” – weighing too little for their height). Continue reading

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Don’t eat the street food! – Food safety in Bangladesh

I’d been in Bangladesh for three months before the first of my tummy troubles arrived. I still don’t know what it was that I ate or why I hadn’t been sick before then – but once the problems started, they didn’t leave until I left Bangladesh.

Before arriving, I’d heard rumours about “Bangla Belly” and the “Dhaka Dash”. Those euphemisms are as famous as India’s “Delhi Belly” or Myanmar’s “Rangoon Runs”, and it breaks my heart that countries with such delicious and diverse cuisines often get remembered for their diarrhoea-inducing curries before anything else.

Street Snacks in Dhaka. Image from Flickr by John Pavelka. CC BY

The reason we foreigners make such a fuss about it is because in most developed countries, food poisoning is rare. It’s something you get once every few years after eating greasy chicken from the corner takeaway shop; it’s something you pretend to have to get out of work or school exams. But in Bangladesh it’s a very real problem. Every year, gastroenteritis and diarrhoeal diseases kill 110,000 children below the age of five. Continue reading

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Bangladesh: Low Dependency on Agricultural Products Prompts Food Security Fears

Bangladesh is predominantly an agricultural country. A large number of population are dependent on agriculture. Currently the net contribution to GDP in this sector is 19.1%.

Recent studies reveal [bn] a decreasing trend on the dependency on agriculture and agricultural products in the country. The employment in agriculture sector is also decreasing. The last four decades saw a tremendous rise in the industry and service sectors, which is the main cause.

Currently almost 48% of population are dependent on agriculture. Only five years ago it was 60%. The employment in agriculture sector has decreased by 20%. The number of landless people have risen to an alarming 9%, which interprets to about 15 million people.

Bangladesh is known to be an agricultural country, however the dependency on agriculture is decreasing day by day. Image from Wikipedia by Balaram Mahalder. CC: BY-NC

In recent years the price of agricultural products has risen. Manure, Water for irrigation, electricity and diesel all have become expensive and as a result the cost of produces has increased. But the farmers are not getting enough profit from the crops as the price of produces are not rising proportionately. Continue reading

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World Food Day Event In Dhaka in Pictures

On 16th of October, Tuesday SUPRO organized human chain, street theater and cultural show in front of National Museum at Shahbagh, Dhaka, Bangladesh. Here is the event in Pictures:

Speech
Song
Speech
Street Theater
Participants

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Today’s Program in Dhaka

GROW Week Celebration at National Level (Dhaka, Bangladesh): Programs of 16 October, Tuesday:

What When Where Who
Seminar on “Stop Food Adulteration” 10:00am-1:00pm National Press Club DBM
Round Table Meeting on “Employment, Nutrition and Food Security of Rural Women” 3.00pm-5.00 pm Reporters Unity Karmojibi Nari(KN), Krishi Sramik Odhikar Monch
Mass gathering to address urban poverty 3:00 pm- 5:00 pm Korail Slum, Dhaka DBM
Dialogue on “Food Security and Disaster” 3:00 pm- 5:00 pm University of Dhaka University of Dhaka and Oxfam

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The Right to Food: A Fundamental Human Right

What is the Right to Food?

The right to food is a human right. It is the most fundamental human right to ensuring that people live with dignity, free from hunger, food insecurity and malnutrition. The right to food was formally recognized in the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights and reinforced afterwards by the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.

Jean Ziegler, the first UN Special Rapporteur on Right to Food has defined the right to food as: “the right to have regular, permanent and unrestricted access, either directly or by means of financial purchases, to quantitatively and qualitatively adequate and sufficient food corresponding to the cultural traditions of the people to which the consumer belongs, and which ensures a physical and mental, individual and collective, fulfilling and dignified life free of fear.”

The Food Rights Of Children. Courtesy Piccolo Chef

Olivier De Schutter, the current UN Special Rapporteur on Right to Food stated: “The right to food is not primarily the right to be fed after an emergency. It is the right, for all, to have legal frameworks and strategies in place that further the realization of the right to adequate food.” Continue reading

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