Every year, on October 16th, people around the world take time to observe World Food Day, commemorating the creation by the United Nations of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). This year Global Minnesota organized a day-long virtual symposium under the theme “Countdown to Zero Hunger in 2030.” We focused on forging the new partnerships needed to accelerate our progress on Sustainable Development Goal #2 – Zero Hunger.

This happens to be the 75th anniversary year of the UN and the FAO, both launched right after World War II, in 1945. On the 50th anniversary of both of these vital global institutions a coalition of groups, coordinated by the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy,  gathered the surviving founders of the UN and the FAO to both honor them and to learn as much as we could about their motivations, their hopes and dreams, and how they saw the outcomes after 50 years. We gathered in the original settings – the Opera House in San Francisco and the Chateau in Quebec City, to recreate as best we could the original atmosphere and context. Without exception, the speakers opened and closed their remarks with the reminder that they had seen two World Wars, and a Great Depression that came out of the first and led to the second, so their motivations were simply stated – to prevent and if possible to survive a third world war.  The cruelty of nuclear holocaust was visible to all as they gathered to forge a new world order.

The year before this we had gathered the founders of the IMF, World Bank, and the International Trade Organization in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire, and it was pretty much the exact same message. They knew from their own experience that we could not survive another world war and that it would take a truly global effort to address the underlying causes of war.

Read the full article about zero hunger by Mark Ritchie at Global Washington.