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FAO: Small island developing states are to start obesity, hunger combatting

17.07.2019 18:11 "Agro Perspectiva" (Kyiv) As of now, at UN Headquarters (NY), the High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF) meeting (this year Jul 9–18) is taking place, FAO reports. As to the report, within the Forum, a side event focused on the accelerating progress on the SDGs through the implementation of the Global Action Program (GAP) on Food Security and Nutrition within the Small Islands Developing States (SIDS), has taken place this week. While speaking within the event, FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva has said obesity affecting the SIDS populations is a health emergency and these nations need to take ownership of measures to address this worrying trends underlying causes. As to him, the impacts of climate change, limited local food due to scarce and degraded land and ocean resources, changes in diets and a high dependence on imported foods- often ultra-processed products that are high in salts, sugars and fats- have led to «extremely high levels of overweight and obesity». As to the 2019State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World (SOFI) report launched earlier at the forum by FAO, IFAD, UNICEF, WFP and WHO, adult obesity within SIDS is almost 60% up against the global average, and within many Polynesian and Micronesian small island nations, almost one of two adults is obese. The prevalence of hunger or undernourishment is also higher within SIDS than globally (17.5% against 10.7%), the SOFI report says. «The growing reliance on food imports is related to the vulnerability of local food systems that support more diversified diets, and to weather related shocks,» da Silva admitted. «We need a global compromise for the Small Islands Development States, and I am happy that the upcoming session of the General Assembly, this September, will review and assess the implementation of the SAMOA Pathway,» the FAO Chief emphasized.

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