17 Days 17 SDGs is a social media campaign that launched today to mark the countdown to the UN Food Systems Summit in New York. The 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) hinge on efforts to deliver food system transformation and the campaign that kicked off this morning aims to focus minds on the critical link between the two.
“We want you to join our #FoodSystems4SDGs countdown campaign – 17 days to highlight how transforming our food systems can help the world achieve critical progress on all 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs),” the organisers said. “Running from September 6 – 22, this social media campaign will unpack one SDG per day to highlight the relationship between better food systems and making progress across all of the SDGs to build a resilient world where no one is hungry, no one is poor, and no one is left behind.”
The #UNFSS2021 is a People’s Summit.
Challenged to bring forward strategies that can accelerate ‘positive changes to the world’s food systems’ the New York summit will welcome participants from across the world who are committed to radically reshaping these systems. And hope is high that after 18 months of long negotiations and meetings between stakeholders, including UN Member States, youth groups, food producers, Indigenous Peoples, civil society, and the private sector, that detailed commitments and action plans for transforming global food systems will be laid out in the Big Apple in 17 days time. Anyone can sign up to join the virtual UN Food Systems Summit taking place on 23 September and be part of what will hopefully be an important moment for the future of food.
To transform food systems, targeted investment is needed to support soil research, promote efficient farming techniques, develop resilient crop varieties, and provide small scale farmers with the technologies they need to improve their techniques. These are just some of the areas that demand an injection of cash. While scaleable innovations like alternative proteins, which could help reduce pressure on the environment, must also be part of the solution.
In an interview earlier this year on the Inside Ideas podcast, Emily Hennessee, a policy associate at the Good Food Institute (GFI), spoke to Marc Buckley about the importance of these, on the back of three reports indicating 2020 was a breakthrough year for alternative proteins.
“The fragility of the food systems the pandemic exposed has shown people that real change needs to be made,” Hennessee said. “The risk of zoonotic diseases and future pandemics are real and alternative proteins can help reduce that risk. We can take control and deal with future crisis’ but it’s now or never in terms of taking charge and shifting gears.”
Catch up with the full interview below.