23 September, 2014 – Private sector actors from farmers, to traders, to food companies and input providers, are self-organising their input into the 2nd International Conference on Nutrition (ICN2) – an inter-governmental meeting on nutrition organised by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World Health Organization (WHO) from 19-21 November 2014.
The process has now been formalized by the co-organizers at FAO and WHO. The participation of the Private Sector shall be coordinated through the Private Sector Steering Committee (PSSC). The PSSC is comprised of the Private Sector Mechanism (PSM), the Sun Business Network (SBN) and the International Dairy Federation (IDF) on behalf of the livestock sector. The PSSC is tasked to arrange the engagement of the private sector in the ICN2 process and be the main interlocutor of the two agencies in arranging the engagement of the private sector in the ICN2 process. Private sector engagement will be self-organised, and develop mechanisms to call for open and transparent participation of private sector of all sizes and from all regions.
One hundred Private Sector representatives will be invited to the event on 19th-21st November at the FAO headquarters in Rome. On the 18th of November there will be a chance for Private Sector participants to present their thoughts on ICN2 to the Director-General of FAO, Mr. Graziano da Silva. Nominations for Private Sector participation can be made though the IAFN website here.
This week, private sector actors are in Geneva for the negotiations on the final ICN2 texts. To read an update from the United States Council for International Business (USCIB) click here.
8 August, 2014 – In Rome, private sector representatives have expressed extreme dismay with the lack of recognition of the role of farmers in new Principles on Responsible Agricultural Investment. The Principles, to be endorsed by the UN Committee on World Food Security (CFS) in October, fail to recognise that farmers – in all their sizes – are a vital part of our agricultural system.
The document as currently worded suggests that being a farmer is not a valid self-identity – having to pick whether they are “smallholders” or “business”. It disrespects their established role around other UN processes and most of all it ignores their primary role in producing the world’s food. Private sector representatives have spoken on the Plenary floor, stating that this is a sad message to take back to farmer organisations around the world.
The private sector has had a seat at every stage of the two-year negotiation process through the International Agri-Food Network (IAFN) and has made the case that the Principles, being voluntary, must have a positive focus if businesses and states are to commit to them.
20 June, 2014: – A broad and diverse delegation of private sector representatives have participated in the global debate on nutrition with UN countries in Rome. The IAFN, the SUN Business Network and others were present for the meeting, which took place in the run-up to the Second International Conference on Nutrition (ICN2) in November 2014.
The IAFN told the international audience it hopes ICN2 “will be a game-changing, meaningful conference that will make a real difference for millions of nutrition insecure people around the world”. José Graziano da Silva, Director General of the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), welcomed the participation of both the private sector and civil society, highlighting that “the participation of non-state actors is critical for the success of any development process”.
The rest of the private sector intervention can be read pdf here (154 KB)
A write up from the Global Harvest Initiative can be read here