By the DuPont Advisory Committee on Agriculture Innovation and Productivity
Special to Roll Call
July 12, 2012, Midnight
The world looks vastly different than it did during the last U.N. conference in Rio 20 years ago. Coupled with recalcitrant rates of hunger and malnutrition, the world is facing fewer resources, deteriorating ecosystems, inadequate infrastructure and growing inequalities. These social, economic and environmental challenges are inextricably linked to eliminating global hunger. Developing reliable and credible tools that can measure and assess these forces and, in turn, identify where local improvements can be made is, therefore, even more essential.
The index will enable governments to make more-informed decisions about how to feed those who live within their borders — from providing country-by-country comparisons that can justify necessary changes to restrictive policies on the movement of food and agricultural products to providing insight into where best to allocate resources based on local conditions and barriers.
Likewise, for the private sector, the index provides the opportunity for new corporate partners to engage in the developing world, aligning their business strategies with country-specific needs. And, for multinationals already committed to global food security, these companies are able to better target investments in countries that are most in need, forming new partnerships with governments and local NGOs to empower smallholder farmers and strengthen the global value chain.
Put simply, the index is a game changer that can help catalyze our progress toward eliminating global hunger in a sustainable way. At the same time, we know that no one agency, country or instrument can address the complex challenges ahead. It will take collective efforts, shared information and innovation. The Global Food Security Index is but one tool designed to catalyze innovative approaches to building economies and local food systems. With the right tools, we can keep moving toward zero hunger.
The DuPont Advisory Committee on Agriculture Innovation and Productivity represents a group of experts in global agriculture development, science, policy and economics. Established by DuPont in 2010, the committee includes former Sen. Tom Daschle, who serves as chairman; Charlotte Hebebrand, CEO of the International Food and Agriculture Trade Policy Council; J.B. Penn, chief economist for Deere and Co.; Pedro Sanchez, director of the Tropical Agricultural and the Rural Environment Program and director of the Millennium Villages Project at the Earth Institute; and Jo Luck, former president and CEO of Heifer International.