Food security challenges and vulnerability in Small Island Developing States (SIDS)

Achieving food security and improving nutrition are crucial to reach the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Not only they are essential to reach SDG2 – Zero Hunger, but they are also linked to many other SDGs including SDG3 – Good Health and Well-Being, SDG12 – Responsible Consumption and Production, SDG14 – Life Below Water, and SDG15 – Life on Land, among others. The new pilot Multidimensional Vulnerability Index (MVI) prepared by the Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) and the UN Resident Coordinators in Small Island Developing States (SIDS) shows that there exists a negative relationship between the degree of structural vulnerability of countries across the world and their progress towards achieving SDG2 – Zero Hunger. This implies that countries with a higher degree of vulnerability face more difficulties to end hunger and achieve food security and improved nutrition. Food security in SIDS is a policy priority which requires coordinating efforts from different stakeholders at both the local and international level. To address the problem of obesity and related diseases in SIDS, adequate national legislation, policies, and initiatives should be implemented. Introducing healthy public procurement policies and nutrition labelling policies, restricting marketing of unhealthy food, taxing food high in fat, sugar, and salt, promoting school food and nutrition education programmes as well as information on healthy eating habits may limit imports of unhealthy food.

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