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Monday, December 24, 2018

UN sharpens focus on food safety, nutrition with observance day - NaijaAgroNet

The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) has applauded the United Nations decision by the United Nations to create two new international days and one entire year devoted to central issues in global food security and nutrition, reports NaijaAgroNet.

The UN General Assembly, NaijaAgroNet gathered, had on December 20, approved three new resolutions creating three awareness-raising initiatives, focused on plant health, food safety and pulses.

FAO and the International Plant Protection Convention Secretariat, based at FAO, welcomed the decision to proclaim 2020 as the International Year of Plant Health. With up to 40 percent of global food crops lost annually due to plant pests, the importance of fostering healthy plants is critical for public opinion and policy makers. In economic terms alone, plant diseases cost the global economy around $220 billion annually and invasive insects around $70 billion.

"The International Year of Plant Health is a key initiative to highlight the importance of plant health to enhance food security, protect the environment and biodiversity, and boost economic development," FAO Deputy Director-General Maria Helena Semedo said.

Meanwhile, from now on, 10 February will mark World Pulses Day, keeping alive the positive momentum surrounding these healthy, nutritious, protein-rich, nitrogen-fixing legumes after FAO's successful 2016 International Year of Pulses Campaign. Growing pulses contributes to sustainable crop production.

And 7 June will be World Food Safety Day, paying tribute to an increasingly important issue in today's highly-interconnected food systems. FAO notes with satisfaction that the UN resolution expressly recognized that "there is no food security without food safety".

Isaac Oyimah/GEE

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