NADI, FIJI – Representatives from across the North and South Pacific gathered on Monday to witness the launch of the first-ever Pacific Regional Food Security Atlas on the opening day of the Pacific Seed Forum in Nadi, Fiji.
In a region highly prone to natural disasters, accurate and up-to-date data will support informed decisions by affected member countries and communities to prepare for and respond more effectively to a crisis or disaster.
The Pacific Regional Food Security Atlas is a joint product developed by the Pacific Community (SPC) and the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), funded by the Australian Government. Divided into nine sections, the Atlas provides information on regional population growth rates, particularly focusing on the significant urbanization and high population densities that have had a marked impact on available resources in the Pacific. High urbanization rates have also led to a growing cash economy and changes in family diets from traditional root crops to more imported processed foods.
The Atlas aims to address a data gap by providing local decision-makers with the baseline information they need to improve the food security and nutritional status of vulnerable and crisis affected communities across the Pacific.
SPC’s Deputy Director General, Audrey Aumua said: “The 2018 Pacific Regional Food Security Atlas is the first of its kind for the Pacific and will improve our understanding of the core issues and risks that affect food security, poverty, and vulnerability across the Pacific. The Atlas will provide a solid basis for putting into action an ambitious and comprehensive National Food and Nutrition Security and Adaptation Plan.”
Aside from analysing factors such as poverty rates, obesity, livelihood trends, cyclone and El Niño risks, the Atlas highlights cross-cutting issues like gender in order to better reflect the different realities faced by women, men, boys and girls in accessing food and nutrition. This information is designed to help governments and development partners tailor effective, targeted solutions that will benefit every person, especially the most vulnerable.
WFP Pacific’s Head of Office, Peter French said, “The Atlas is a significant contribution to the work that is underway at regional and national level bringing stakeholders a step closer in meeting their Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly SDG 2 which focuses on ending hunger, achieving food security and improved nutrition and promoting sustainable agriculture.” The Pacific Seed Forum concludes this Friday.
The ATLAS report is available online: https://reliefweb.int/node/2629009
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The Pacific Community (SPC) is an international development organisation gathering 26 Member Countries and Territories. Since 1947, SPC has proudly supported development in the Pacific as the principal scientific and technical organisation for the region. Learn more at www.spc.int
The United Nations World Food Programme - saving lives in emergencies and changing lives for millions through sustainable development. WFP works in more than 80 countries around the world, feeding people caught in conflict and disasters, and laying the foundations for a better future.
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Sanya Ruggiero, WFP/Fiji, Tel. +679 8666 445