Food systems are a global and immediate priority in the context of climate change, health and resilience. This 3-day conference focuses on the future of food systems in Africa. The conference will explore the complexity, diversity and nutritional value of African food systems and launch an action plan and declaration for change for better food systems geared towards the general public and policymaking bodies including the African Union and the Regional Economic Communities. The first two days will focus on five thematic areas. On the third day, the participants will join with the participants of an organic agriculture conference which follows the food systems event. The combined participants on the third day will number between 400 – 500.
- Explore how to address the crisis in urban food systems and its impact on rural food systems, and recommend changes.
- Explore how fixing the food system can reduce greenhouse gases through carbon sequestration.
- Explore what has happened to the outcome of the last meeting and re-strategize to implement the recommendations.
- Identify research agendas to explore what African food systems should look like in the continent, where the complexity will be exacerbated by climate change and social upheavals.
- Investigate the variety and complexity of African food systems and show the implication of their erosion by the industrial food system, and develop strategies to counter it.
- Identify a campaign agenda before the conference and use the conference to launch the campaign, with the African food sovereignty movement fully behind it.
- Conference recommendations on how to fix the food system in urban areas and integrate urban rural linkage.
- Conference recommendation on what instruments can be used to support agroecology with the ultimate goal of reducing the GHGs which are exacerbating climate change.
- Raised awareness of the negative effects of the industrial food system and the alternatives proposed by the participants.
- Recognition of the science of resilience as a key strategy for transforming the industrial food system.
- Cases of healthy food systems in Africa documented as part of the preparation for the conference, and the profile of African food systems is raised.
- Launch of a campaign on changing food systems in Africa.
The conference will bring together research and development networks, key experts in the workshop’s thematic areas, food producers, consumer associations, youth, women, research institutions, media, governments, and non-governmental organizations working at global, regional and national level on the linkages between food production, nutrition and health.
A diverse participation is envisaged to bring diverse views and opinions and it is anticipatedthat the conference will attract 200 participants from across Africa and further afield. Simultaneous translation (English/French) will be organized. A conference report will be available in both English and French.
The conference will be characterized by the following:
- Alignment to address three key areas: Why change, What to change, and How to bring about the change. It aims to be action-oriented to move beyond usual conference declarations.
- Selection of inspirational speakers to give keynotes on the five key thematic areas.
- Using methodologies based on art to facilitate the process. These would include drawing, painting, preparing&cooking food, drama, poems, storytelling, etc.
Conferene website: http://foodsystems.afsafrica.org/