United Nations in the Committee on Food Security: Rome PSM Meeting (Andrew Mallison)
One of the major food policy forming bodies of the United Nations in the Committee on Food Security. Unusually, this Committee has formed the Private Sector Mechanism, a platform for private sector companies to be consulted on, and inform, the food policy process. IFFO are part of the PSM and I met with various groups of member states during a week of meetings in Rome from 30th May.
Member state groups included Europe and Europe Region, Africa, Near East and North Africa, totalling nearly fifty individual states. A meeting with China was cancelled at the last minute due to non availability of the China delegates.
Although the debates were at the level of the Sustainable Development Goals rather than the specifics of the marine ingredients industry, it was an opportunity to speak to member states about the importance of fish, whether wild or farmed, to human nutrition, water conservation, gender balance and several other SDG's. Given the well established and massive presence of the agriculture industry at these forums, it is important for IFFO and the wider fish industry to raise awareness of importance of fish to human nutrition and ensure policy makers are aware of the role of fish in contributing to global food security.
The meetings were also an opportunity to meet key contacts with the Fisheries and Aquaculture departments of FAO to follow up current projects and discuss opportunities for collaboration in the future.