GHF2012 – PL05 – Food, Globalization & Chronic Diseases: Overcoming Policy Cacophony?

Session Outline

Plenary session PL05, Friday, April 20 2012, 09:00-10:30, Room 2
Chair: Nicolas Clark, World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland
Double Burden of Malnutrition: Hub in French-Speaking Africa
Helene Delisle, Department of Nutrition, University of Montreal, Montreal, Canada
The Right to an Adequate Diet: The Agriculture-Food-Health Nexus
Olivier de Schutter, United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food, Geneva, Switzerland
The Food and Beverage Industry’s Contribution to The Fight Against NCDs
Janet Voute, Nestlé S.A., Vevey, Switzerland
An Ecological Public Health Model to Reshape Food Systems: Is it still possible?
Geof Rayner, Centre for Food Policy, City University London, UK

Session Documents

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Session Videos

Olivier de Schutter - The Right to an Adequate Diet: The Agriculture-Food-Health Nexus

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One Response to GHF2012 – PL05 – Food, Globalization & Chronic Diseases: Overcoming Policy Cacophony?

  1. David Beran 20/04/2012 at 08:21 #

    Food has helped increase life expectancy over the past few years, but now because of food and the types of food people are consuming this trend is being reversed due to increases in obesity.

    This challenge also includes globalisation and technology. These bring both benefits to health, but are also drivers of changes in nutrition.

    In thinking of the double-burden this needs to be looked at from the individual, family, community and national perspective. The double-burden exists at all these levels, the drivers are the same including food insecurity and poverty. Both of these concepts in the past have been associated with malnutrition, but now are also factors in over nutrition.

    After discussing health systems another system’s approach is needed in looking at food systems, from farm to plate. What we produce and where is impacting diets throughout the world. Is a western appetite for tropical products causing obesity and chronic diseases in low income settings as we are shifting what is available in these countries. Trade and investment are areas outside of the health system as is agriculture, but food is the essence of health and illness. The Right to food is not only the Right not to starve, but also the Right to the right food!

    Rather than notes from Janet Voute’s presentation a series of questions:
    What role for the food industry? How can we work with the food industry as public health specialists? Should we work with the food industry? The International Diabetes Federation a partner with Nestle how can that be?

    In linking the Nestle presentation to Geoff Rayner’s a question who is/should be the conductor in the issue of addressing food systems?

    Changing a paradigm Geoff Rayner proposes addressing ecological health and its link with human health. The common NCD risk factors are diseases of our modern civilisation. He also shows the complexity of the issue and multiple factors contributing to changes in what and how we eat. This how and what we eat also has a link to the environment and developing a sustainable environment. So far the policy response has failed as it has been too soft. Rethink diet around environmental limits.

    Summary of a fascinating session:
    – double burden
    – obesity is everywhere
    – need to look at food systems, from farm to plate
    – advertising for food versus public health budgets
    – commitments soft versus hard
    – industry and its self-regulation
    – healthy foods being produced by the industry that also taste good
    – complicated issue, the individual versus the system
    – the market forces that hamper company’s good intentions

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