The Global Alliance for the Future of Food (GAFF), supported by the Barilla Center for Food & Nutrition, recently published a series of dialogues to delve into the connections between climate change and food systems. These dialogues bring together the visions of diverse stakeholders to facilitate a global conversation regarding the challenges of food system reform.
GAFF is a philanthropic collaboration that advocates for a more sustainable and equitable food system through collective action. Through these interviews, GAFF brings together varied perspectives on the challenges and opportunities arising as food systems and climate change become ever more entwined. From the local to the global scale, diverse participants are ready to engage in sustainable food systems.
Grassroots Movements Are Rightful Partners in Finding Solutions to Climate Change: Rajasvini Bhansali, executive director of Thousand Currents (formerly IDEX), advocates for the support of small-scale farmers and a focus on funding community initiatives. Bhansali speaks of the need to integrate scientific knowledge with local traditional knowledge, especially in the Global South. She calls for the involvement of more young people in the science and politics of climate change.
Promoting Food Security and Health in a Climate Changing World: Cecilia Rocha is an International Panel of Experts on Sustainable Food Systems panelist, professor, and Director of the School of Nutrition and Associate Researcher at the Center for Studies in Food Security at Ryerson University in Toronto. She highlights the importance of policymaking at local, national, and international levels to support healthy and sustainable food systems. Rocha also speaks about the interconnectedness of global food systems and encourages people to travel abroad and learn from shared experiences.
Food Systems Aren’t as Prominent as They Should be in the Climate Change Agenda: Nadia El-Hage Scialabba, U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization ecologist, explains that agriculture is one of the greatest drivers of climate change yet also has the greatest opportunity for mitigation. Switching livestock to a grass-fed system provides a decrease in greenhouse gases. El-Hage Scialabba calls for better dissemination of information to youth, who are often bombarded with contradicting information but who are committed to changing consumer habits in support of sustainable food systems.
Agroecology as a Means to Transforming Food Systems for Health, Nutrition, and Equity in a Climate Changing World: Olivia Yambi, Co-Chair of the International Panel of Experts on Sustainable Food Systems, discusses the importance of a holistic and analytical approach to food systems. She argues that food systems need to be supportive of good nutrition and health outcomes. Yambi hopes that global youth provide solutions for creating sustainable food systems, given their access to information and technology.
Through these dialogues run the themes of grassroots efforts, global experience sharing, and the desire of young people to live in a more sustainable world. The Global Alliance for the Future of Food brings together multiple perspectives united in their hope for food system reform in the face of climate change.