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Publication focuses on impact of Covid-19 on hunger, food security

Picture: Supplied

Picture: Supplied

Published May 28, 2020

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Cape Town – The Community Chest has joined

forces with the Southern Africa

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Food Labin launching a publication

reflecting on the impact of the

Covid-19 pandemic on hunger and

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food security. 

Titled “World Hunger Day 2020

Challenging False Narratives in a

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Global Crisis: Reflections on Human

Rights, Inequality and Securing Food

Systems”, the publication forms

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part of marking International World

Hunger Day today. 

Reflecting on human rights,

equality and securing food

systems, the compilation of papers

was written by academic, business

and community experts on food

systems and security from South

Africa, Nigeria, Ghana and the

US. 

The papers provide insight and

recommendations including how we

build new food systems and provide

a sense of what it will take to build

them. 

The writers found that the

pandemic had exposed the

inadequacy of existing governance

processes and structures; the

right to food – as enshrined in

the Constitution – was a fallacy;

geographic location and income

were directly linked to food

sources; there was a need for better

communication and collaboration

between the government, civil

society and the people. 

They concluded that there was a

need to reinvent food security in a

post-Covid-19 South Africa. 

Community Chest chief

executive Lorenzo Davids said: “In

a time of the pandemic crisis and

with the president’s Freedom Day

call to South Africans to invest in

a new society, a new consciousness

and a new economy, we should

now begin to ask ourselves a

series of deep questions about our

developmental trajectory, and in

particular in relation to food security

for vulnerable communities.

“Have we been wrong about our

strategies about poverty eradication,

poverty elimination and poverty

reduction? Have we been asking the

right questions about how to engage

the poorest 31million citizens about

a more food-, health- and education-secure future?” 

The publication is co-edited by

Southern Africa Food Lab director

Professor Scott Drimie and Zenariah

Barends, Community Chest head of

the Sediba Global Partnership Office. 

Barends said: “While Covid-19

has not been the reason, it has

exacerbated and starkly illuminated

the food security crisis South Africa

and the world already faced.” 

Drimie added: “The collaboration

with Community Chest to make

sense of the disruption of the food

system during Covid-19 has exposed

the structural inequalities and fault

lines of our society. 

“There is clearly a need to

respond immediately to hunger, to

facilitate connections across our

joint networks and to catalyse

action that supports sustained access

to good nutrition in vulnerable

communities beyond the Covid-19

pandemic.” 

Cape Times

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