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5 Takeaways to Move Food Systems in 2023

In the words of Lizzo: it’s about damn time.

For the first time in 2022, food systems figured prominently at COP27, the world’s global convening on climate change, held last year in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt. Food systems also moved up the nature agenda in the Global Biodiversity Framework (GBF) forged at COP15 Montreal, Canada, and signed by nearly 190 nations.

But time is not on our side. The world is skirting disaster, in no small part due to food systems that emit roughly 30 percent of global greenhouse gasses and are responsible for 90% of deforestation; and that produce diets responsible for one-in-five global deaths. Our global food system is also the primary driver of biodiversity loss, with agriculture directly threatening 86% of species at risk of extinction.

Neither does the current food system succeed in its most basic purpose: providing enough healthy food for all. Today, a global food crisis affects up to 828 million people who go to sleep hungry every day. More than 345 million people are suffering from or at risk of acute food insecurity, more than double the number from 2019.

But 2022’s global convenings bore fruit.

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