Four more years, that’s what we got last night. Four more years to solidify American leadership in ending hunger through agricultural development. Four more years to make President Obama’s Feed the Future initiative a permanent part of American policy no matter the political makeup in Congress and the White House. That was the President’s promise to the world’s poorest when he spoke at the Chicago Council’s Symposium on Global Agriculture and Food Security in May.
“We can unleash the change that reduces hunger and malnutrition,” President Obama proclaimed then. “We can spark the kind of economic growth that lifts people and nations out of poverty. This is the new commitment that we’re making, and I pledge to you today that this will remain a priority as long as I am the United States president.”
He continued: “We’ll stay focused on clear goals: boosting farmers’ incomes and over the next decade helping 50 million men, women and children lift themselves out of poverty.”
We must hold him to it.
It will take great resolve and plenty of clamor-raising. For forward also lies the fiscal cliff. Budget cuts to corral the rampaging deficit will be necessary. And that will mean increasing pressure to whack away at foreign aid and investments in development. The White House will need to rouse a strong defense to protect Feed the Future.
The best way to do this is to make global food security a shared goal, embraced by both Democrat and Republican, to remove it from the partisan realm, to project it not as an Obama initiative but as an American initiative. Because agricultural development is what America does, and does best. Eliminating hunger was at the heart of two of America’s greatest diplomatic and development achievements: the Marshall Plan, which secured the peace after World War II by aiding the European recovery, and the Green Revolution, which conquered famine in many parts of the developing world.
Last night in his victory speech, President Obama spoke about a generous and compassionate America. Feed the Future is the face of this America to hundreds of millions of people in the developing world.
So forward with feeding the future. Forward with securing the global food supply to meet the demands of a growing population. Forward with creating the conditions for all the world’s farmers to be as productive as possible. Forward with vastly improving the planet’s nutrition. Forward with ending child stunting. Forward with banishing the shameful oxymoron “hungry farmers.”
Forward to a world with no hunger season.
The latest edition of our Food Security podcast features Roger Thurow and Jenni Duggan.
The latest edition of out Food Security podcast features Roger Thurow and journalist Karim Chrobog.
Introducing our new podcast on nutrition, hunger, and food security around the world
The 1,000 days are front and center at the Borlaug Dialogues.
Check out a webinar with Roger Thurow on bringing life to the statistics on early child development, via the International Journalists' Network.
Check out an excerpt from Roger Thurow’s book The First 1,000 Days that was syndicated for The Fatherly Forum, a community of parents and influencers with insights about work, family, and life.
According to Roger Thurow, we've neglected nutrition in utero and infancy, with devastating consequences: via Nicholas Kristof's On the Ground blog.
Guest Commentary – “A Stunted Child Anywhere Is a Stunted Child Everywhere:” An Interview with ‘1,000 Days’ Author Roger Thurow
Roger Thurow sat down with Samantha Urban of the ONE Campaign to discuss his new book, The First 1,000 Days.
Get an exclusive excerpt of Roger Thurow's The First 1,000 Days, available from the ONE Campaign.
Roger Thurow sat down with Nathanael Johnson of Grist to discuss the linkage between good nutrition, societal growth, and environmental preservation, as well as his new book, The First 1,000 Days.
Get a first-look at photos and stories from the book in this web interactive.
Digital Preview of The First 1,000 Days
In his new book, The First 1,000 Days, Council senior fellow Roger Thurow illuminates the 1,000 Days initiative to end early childhood malnutrition through the compelling stories of new mothers in Uganda, India, Guatemala, and Chicago. Get a first-look at photos and stories from the book in this new web interactive.
Roger Thurow’s book will tell the story of the vital importance of proper nutrition and health care in the 1,000 days window from the beginning of a woman’s pregnancy to her child’s second birthday.
The 1,000 days period is the crucial period of development, when malnutrition can have severe life-long impacts on the individual, the family and society as a whole. Nutritional deficiencies that occur during this time are often overlooked, resulting in a hidden hunger. It is a problem of great human and economic dimensions, impacting rich and poor countries alike.
In The Last Hunger Season, the intimate dramas of the farmers' lives unfold amidst growing awareness that to feed the world's growing population, food production must double by 2050. How will the farmers, Africa, and a hungrier world deal with issues of water usage, land ownership, foreign investment, corruption, GMO's, the changing role of women, and the politics of foreign aid?
Roger Thurow and Scott Kilman, award-winning writers on Africa, development, and agriculture, see famine as the result of bad policies spanning the political spectrum. In this compelling investigative narrative, they explain through vivid human stories how the agricultural revolutions that transformed Asia and Latin America stopped short in Africa, and how our sometimes well-intentioned strategies—alternating with ignorance and neglect—have conspired to keep the world’s poorest people hungry and unable to feed themselves.