The 2nd International Conference on Nutrition (#ICN2) in Rome last week brought together global leaders and stakeholders to confront the global problem of malnutrition in the biggest nutrition congress of its kind.
Based on the outcomes of the conference, the FAO and World Health Organisation (WHO) have published a new framework document that outlines points of action to improve health through nutrition and create a more sustainable food system for the growing global population.
The ‘commitments to action’ outcomes document includes a 60 action recommendations covering 15 key topic areas - from the promotion of sustainable food systems and healthy diets to improving international trade and investment and addressing global health systems to improve nutrition.
The voluntary framework aims to guide the implementation of the commitments of the Rome Declaration on Nutrition that was adopted last week.
“Building on existing commitments, goals and targets, this Framework for Action provides a set of policy options and strategies which governments, acting in cooperation with other stakeholders, may incorporate, as appropriate, into their national nutrition, health, agriculture, development and investment plans, and consider in negotiating international agreements to achieve better nutrition for all,” states the WHO and FAO document.
A new framework
The action plan urges national governments – who have primary responsibility for taking action at country level – to, “consider the appropriateness of the recommended policies and actions in relation to national needs and conditions, as well as regional and national priorities, including in legal frameworks.”
The 60 point set of policy and programme options aims to create an enabling environment and to improve nutrition in all sectors and includes recommended actions in 15 key areas:
- Creating an enabling environment for effective action
- Sustainable food systems promoting healthy diets
- International trade and investment
- Nutrition education and information
- Social protection
- Strong and resilient health systems
- Promote, protect and support breastfeeding
- To address wasting
- To address stunting
- To address childhood overweight and obesity
- Anaemia in women of reproductive age
- Health services to improve nutrition
- Water, sanitation and hygiene
- Food safety and antimicrobial resistance
The WHO and FAO document also noted that ‘for the purpose of accountability’, the Framework for Action adopts existing global targets for improving maternal, infant and young child nutrition to be achieved by 2025 and for noncommunicable disease risk factor reduction.