Thank you Administrator Isley, Undersecretary McKinney, Undersecretary Northey, and Members of Congress. And thank you, Ambassador Quinn and Dr. Ejeta, for your commitment to ending hunger and food insecurity all over the world. It’s my pleasure to join you on behalf of Secretary Pompeo to congratulate Dr. Lawrence Haddad and Dr. David Nabarro, this year’s World Food Prize winners, on their tireless work to end maternal and child undernutrition.
As we all know, food insecurity takes the greatest toll on the most vulnerable of our populations– women and children and that’s why the work of Dr. Haddad and Dr. Nabarro is so important. It also contributes to global unrest and instability and therefore, the role of the State Department as force multiplier overseas for the USDA and agriculture industry is so essential.
At embassies and posts all over the world, our economic officers are opening new markets for U.S. agricultural exports, expanding global access to agricultural biotechnology, and – like Dr. Haddad and Dr. Nabarro – working to end global food insecurity and undernutrition.
I recall the food crisis of 2008 which when combined with the global financial crisis created an acute food insecurity in many parts of the world. The United States government decided then to find immediate and longer term measures to address the critical issue.
The American agriculture industry is an essential partner in the efforts to address global food shortages. By advocating for policies which support the industry, we’re also encouraging others to adopt policies that help put food on the table for people around the world.
I commend the World Food Prize Foundation and Dr. Haddad and Dr. Nabarro for their ground-breaking contributions and for emphasizing that poor nutrition in early childhood can lead to fewer educational opportunities, poor development, and ultimately economic decline.
Dr. Haddad and Dr. Nabarro met that challenge and others head on and – for the first time ever – gained commitments from governments, NGOs, donor agencies, businesses, and other private sector partners to make nutrition a top development priority. That doesn’t just take leadership. It takes vision –
Dr. Norman Borlaug was the original visionary in ending hunger. We’re in need of another Green Revolution to create greater food security in the developing world.
The State Department and the United States government remain committed to global food security and nutrition.
Let’s all continue to work together, the government, the private sector, NGOs and people everywhere– to end global hunger.