The Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF), along with the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO), and the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) joined in celebrating the 2020 World Food Day.
The celebration was held in Sotr Nikum district, Siem Reap province this morning under the presidency of H.E. Veng Sakhon, Minister of MAFF, FAO Country Representative Mr. Alexandre Huynh, and WFP Country Director and Representative Ms. Claire Conan, with participation of officials, representatives of farmers and agricultural cooperatives.
Speaking at the function, H.E. Veng Sakhon affirmed that Cambodia has reduced risks on health thanks to the government’s food security management, but the risks on economy is still high in this context of COVID-19 crisis which has affected food security and nutrition.
“COVID-19 has directly and indirectly affected food security and nutrition. So, we have to collaborate in ‘producing food for humanity’ and not to overlook the ‘maintenance of the earth’s sustainability’ because soil is the foundation of all lives on earth, as well as helps alleviate the crisis caused by climate changes which are having impact on over 250 million people,” he said.
The theme of this year’s celebration is “Grow, Nourish, Sustain Together.”
FAO country representative said that due to the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on economy, many people have lost their jobs and income, making it harder for the vulnerable households to have access to food. Besides, he continued, drought in the early rainy season and current flash floods are another threat for agriculture and food security in Cambodia.
FAO has been collaborating with the MAFF and other relevant ministries as well as farmers and public and private institutions to strengthen the agriculture sector, modernise and change agricultural products, production chains, food prices, and preserve natural resources, added Mr. Alexander Huynh.
For her part, Ms. Claire Conan pointed out that WFP in Cambodia is increasing the amount of food it produces from smallholder farmers as part of its school feeding programmes. “We are excited to do so in partnership with the MAFF and FAO,” she said.
Source: Agency Kampuchea Press