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Cornell researchers will guide the next steps toward global food security when the United Nations’ Committee on World Food Security meets in Rome in mid-October 

Food Security: 10 Critical Needs

September 8, 2014

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Cornell researchers will guide the next steps toward global food security when the United Nations’ Committee on World Food Security meets in Rome in mid-October. The committee’s High Level Panel of Experts (HLPE) contacted President David Skorton in January to ask for Cornell’s help in defining the most pressing challenges in food and nutrition security today.

“We were one of three U.S. universities invited,” explained ACSF’s faculty director of economic development Wendy Wolford. “A group of 12 of us came together to decide on and define the key issues.”

The team pinpointed 10 critical food security needs, from broader access to food markets to strategies to reduce agriculture’s climate impact. These urgent challenges are a focus for immediate research and action—to guarantee sustainable access to safe, nutritious food for all of the world’s people. 

  1. Locally relevant food and nutrition recommendations

    By Rebecca Nelson (Plant Pathology and Plant-Microbe Biology) and
    Jonathan Miller (Homelands Productions)


  2. Equitable access to food, land, and other resources

    By Wendy Wolford (Development Sociology) and
    Marygold Walsh-Dilley (Development Sociology postdoc)


  3. Broader access to food markets

    By Miguel Gómez (Applied Economics and Management) and
    Mark Milstein (Johnson Graduate School of Management)


  4. Solutions to chronic water scarcity

    By Rebecca Schneider (Natural Resources)


  5. Action to stop land loss and soil degradation

    By Robert Howarth (Ecology and Evolutionary Biology)


  6. Sustainable animal-source foods

    By Alexander Travis (Baker Institute, Biomedical Sciences) and
    Daryl V. Nydam (Population Medicine and Diagnostic Sciences)


  7. Strategies to reduce agriculture’s climate impact

    By Robert Howarth (Ecology and Evolutionary Biology)


  8. Action to save marine life and environments

    By Drew Harvell (Ecology and Evolutionary Biology) and
    Ruth Richardson (Civil and Environmental Engineering)


  9. Strategies to reduce food waste

    By Christopher Watkins (Horticulture, Cornell Cooperative Extension)


  10. Ensuring healthier diets, especially for vulnerable people

    By Rebecca Stoltzfus (Nutritional Sciences) and
    Sera Lewise Young (Nutritional Sciences)