MANILA – Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Secretary Rolando Joselito Bautista on Tuesday backed the institutionalization of the National Food Policy (NFP) created by the Inter-Agency Task Force on Zero Hunger.
“The policy will reinforce and harmonize the efforts of the different member-agencies of the task force to create strategies and programs that will help end hunger, improve nutrition, achieve food security and promote sustainable agriculture in our country,” Bautista said in a speech during the virtual launch that coincided with the IATF Zero Hunger’s first anniversary celebration.
Bautista cited the need for members of the IATF, including the private sector and development partners, to work together to ensure that the NFP will be followed.
“A plan or a policy, though it may seem perfect, is nothing when it is not carried out accordingly. All of us in this task force must ensure that the actual implementation of the policies and projects, activities and programs identified under this National Food Policy must be delivered as envisioned,” Bautista said.
The IATF on Zero Hunger was created through President Rodrigo Duterte’s issuance of Executive Order No. 101 on Jan. 10, 2020.
Cabinet Secretary and chair of the IATF on Zero Hunger Karlo Nograles said the goal of the NFP is to end hunger in the Philippines “within this generation’s lifetimes”.
The NFP includes initiatives for ending hunger, achieving food security, improving nutrition, and promoting sustainable agriculture.
It states six key result areas including: to review and rationalize existing policies, rules, and regulations related to the Zero Hunger efforts of government; to ensure available and affordable food; to secure nutrition adequacy; to secure food accessibility and safety; t ensure sustainable food systems, resiliency and food stability during emergencies; and to ensure information, education, awareness, and people participation.
Serving as a catalyst to consolidate and harmonize efforts of the government to end hunger, the NFP shall constantly evolve to respond to the constant changes and needs of the times, Nograles envisions.
“When President Duterte’s term ends in June 2022, the National Food Policy will formally be turned over to the next administration and hopefully they will accept and continue what we have started. The goal is to achieve sustainable development goal 2 which is Zero Hunger by 2030,” Nograles said. (PNA)