Source Article published on October 15, 2023
Water action for food: growth of the jackfruit, breadfruit, and moringa value chains
World Food Day observes annually on October 16th, as established by member countries of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in 1979. The 2023 World Food Day featured the Global World Food Day Ceremony on October 16th. Moreover, there was also the third edition of Junior World Food Day planned for October 19th, 2023.
Water: The Lifeline of Food on World Food Day
“Water is life, water is food,” is the theme for World Food Day this year. Never leave anyone behind. We need access to enough clean water for both our daily needs and our food. Water quality and quantity are impacted by how we produce food and what we eat. Water and food security are therefore intrinsically intertwined. Every human being has the right to constant access to adequate, secure, wholesome, and high-quality food as well as adequate, secure, and palatable water.
The FAO’s flagship study, “The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2023,” claims that between 690 and 783 million people worldwide experienced hunger in 2022. For food security, access to and quality of water are essential. Water, on the other hand, is a finite, delicate, and diminishing resource. According to the FAO, 2.4 billion people live in nations where there is a water shortage, and 2.5% of the water on Earth is freshwater. If we do nothing, climate change and global warming will make the water problems worse.
FAO's Global Call for Responsible Water and Food Consumption
The FAO issues a global call for water action in light of World Food Day 2023 in order to guarantee a future where everyone and everywhere has access to both food and water. Agriculture uses 72% of the world’s freshwater, and by 2050, water demand for agriculture is expected to rise 35% globally. It is vital to find ways to use less water while yet producing more food.
To conserve water, food and life ; the FAO urges us to act with more responsibility and empathy. Choose local, in-season fruits and vegetables, which often use less water to produce; include more water-friendly foods, such as pulses, millets, and nuts to encourage nutritional variety; consume fresher foods; limit food waste, as examples of steps that people everywhere may do. Choose responsibly caught or farmed fish with an eco-label, buy just what you require, conserve water, and do not contaminate it.
Empowering Forgotten Crops for a Sustainable Future on world food day
Underutilized crops, also known as understudied, left out, orphan, forgotten, lost, or disadvantaged crops, can help lessen the reliance of the world’s food system on the “Big 4” primary crops: maize, wheat, soyabean, and rice. A domestic approach to fostering agricultural variety may be to invest in underutilized food crops. Underutilized crops including jackfruit, breadfruit, and moringa have a chance to improve nutritional variety, food security, and the resilience of food system to upcoming shocks in Mauritius. Trees such as jackfruit, breadfruit, and moringa are perennials that live for many years. They are primarily produced in backyards. It is important for both nutritionally and culturally. Researchers need to conduct further research on how these food trees use water, despite claims that they use little water.
Drumstick pods from the jackfruit, breadfruit, and moringa tree are excellent providers of vitamins and antioxidants. Drumsticks of jackfruit, breadfruit, and moringa, however, are prone to lose following harvest and degradation. Peeling and chopping green jackfruit, breadfruit, and moringa drumsticks can be laborious. Yet, they are susceptible to enzymatic browning when they are first cut. These variables place restrictions on how much of them people may use. It’s interesting to note that freshly cut drumsticks of green jackfruit, breadfruit, and moringa may be precooked and frozen to keep them for later use in cooking or processing. A suggested water action for food is hence a benefit to these crops.
From Backyards to Global Markets: Strengthening Local Food Systems in Mauritius
Household participation is helping to establish backyard food crop supply and value chains. The content aims to spark discussions, research, policies, and actions in Mauritius by including customers, households, youths, women, and other stakeholders:
- Create a smartphone application to locate, sign up, and map households willing to provide processing facilities with drumsticks of backyard green jackfruit, breadfruit, and moringa.
- Create cooperatives and food businesses with the participation of young people and women from the neighborhood to gather, preserve, and transform backyard green jackfruit, breadfruit, and moringa drumsticks into pre-cooked frozen goods for specified neighborhood market segments. These could include shops, eateries, and lodging facilities.
- Utilize the smartphone app to link homes with cooperatives and food businesses.
- Establish logistics for the acquisition and delivery of fresh and frozen drumsticks of backyard green jackfruit, breadfruit, and moringa.
- To secure the long-term viability of the value chains for jackfruit, breadfruit, and moringa, execute backyard food tree planting initiatives.
- Establish commercial orchards to advance and broaden the value chains for jackfruit, breadfruit, and moringa in markets abroad.
Building a future where everyone has access to clean water and food is something we can all do together.