Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal 'Prachanda' has said that transforming food systems was crucial not only for food security, but also for full realization of all sustainable development goals.
It is important that we address the bottlenecks in every sector for making a leap towards zero hunger, according to the PM.
At the High Level Session on School Meals in the United Nations Food System Summit +2 Stocktaking Moment in Rome on Monday, the PM said that school meal is such an area that has tremendous transformational impact. "In the first part of 2020, more children had access to school meals globally than at any time in human history. However, this progress was derailed by the COVID-19 pandemic, supply shocks and shrinking fiscal space. As we are recovering from the pandemic, it is important that we redouble our efforts to scale up school feeding programmes."
The PM added that special attention needs to be given to the countries with smaller resource base adding that school meals programmes play a critical role in promoting students' health, academic performance, and overall well-being. "They go beyond providing nourishment, acting as a catalyst for positive change in food systems."
On the occasion, PM Prachanda said that the LDCs and LLDCs have also contributed to reducing the dropout rates from school and Nepal’s experience with school feeding is a success story. "It has integrated agriculture, education, food security, nutrition, health, and sanitation in the best way" he added.
The PM said that Nepal has seen impressive results of school nutrition in boosting enrollment, attendance, and learning outcomes and the budget in last five years for this purpose has been quadrupled.
Likewise, the PM made his commitment to further scale up investment and resources for this important safety net.
The PM also shared about Nepal's Food Systems Transformation Strategic Plan (2022-2030), which was to streamline and link the actions with Sustainable Development Goals.
On the occasion, the PM appreciated the UN System, Nepal's development partners and key stakeholders for their strong commitments to assist Nepal transform its food systems and achieve SDGs by 2030.
Currently, the PM is in Rome of Italy leading a Nepali delegation to attend the UN Food System Summit +2 Stocktaking Moment.