Aligning efforts to track progress of food systems

A food system approach will be critical to end hunger and malnutrition, and achieve multiple Sustainable Development Goals. Comprehensively tracking food systems is essential to ensure that food systems are contributing to sustainable development. Indeed, a tool to track countries’ food systems has broad appeal—it can diagnose issues in food systems, inform policy priorities, identify investment opportunities, provide accountability, and beyond. Toward this end, I discussed the need to align various existing efforts to track and monitor food systems at a side event of the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual gathering in Davos.

During the event, around 25 leaders from the private sector, civil society, international organizations, and academia discussed several initiatives that have been launched recently to help track and monitor food systems. In particular attention was given to:

  • The proposed Global Food System Index, which is designed to provide a holistic look at food systems across key dimensions—nutrition, efficiency, environmental sustainability, social inclusion, enabling environment, and market dynamics; and
  • The Food Sustainability Index, which focuses on food loss and waste, sustainable agriculture, and nutritional challenges.

At the event, consensus formed around the need to work together to track and monitor food systems. I look forward to joining these important initiatives to develop a pragmatic tool to help transform food systems to achieve sustainable development.