Sustainable Practices, Diversified Diets, and Strengthened Coalitions - Kenya's renewed commitments to the Food System Agenda
In the wake of the global Food System Summit 2021, Kenya formed a visionary plan aimed at revolutionising its food system and addressing critical challenges of food security. This comprehensive strategy encompassed sustainable agricultural practices, the promotion of diversified diets, and bolstering value chains to ensure equitable access to food. Kenya may be poised to build a resilient and inclusive food system for its citizens, however, it may only be realised through forging partnerships and embracing innovation.
The vision evolved through multiple Food Systems Dialogues throughout the country which crystallised the vision “to build prosperity through inclusive, innovative, collaborative and dynamic food systems, that are based on data-driven decisions to ensure access to diverse diets from climate resilient production in every region of the country.” This was underpinned by concrete actions geared at reinforcing the attainment of Kenya’s Vision 2030 of food and nutrition security. The concrete actions sought to operationalize the Food Systems Dialogue’s vision where four intertwined pathways were identified:
- Increasing the number of young people and women with access to productive resources that they require to thrive in our food systems.
- Increase the uptake of digital agricultural solutions
- Improve the diversity of diets including fruits, vegetables, dairy, meat and fish, as well as grains.
- Heighten climate action to build the resilience of our people.
These pathways are deemed critical to Kenya’s Food System agenda and require innovative tools to bring together action through collaboration and partnerships. A number of coalitions were established to act as instruments for delivering on the pathways and supporting the delivery of the action tracks, of which Kenya has signed up to four. These pathways underpin the broader national development strategies, priorities and plans. The four coalitions are; A Coalition of Action for Achieving Zero Hunger; School Meals Coalition: Nutrition, Health and Education for Every Child; Global Coalition for Data and Digital Food Systems Innovation; Coalition of Action 4 Soil Health.
In June, the UN Kenya renewed commitments to serving the Government of Kenya’s Food System Agenda. Cabinet Secretary Hon. Linturi discussed the role of the Kenyan delegation for the upcoming Stocktaking Moment on 24-26 July in Rome, including ways to have a stronger presence, and identifying and implementing collective pathways towards more efficient, sustainable and inclusive food systems. The UN Kenya and the Government of Kenya strengthened their relationship and commitment to work together to galvanise focus on the transformation agenda, as outlined in Vision 2030.
As Kenya takes decisive steps to implement this plan, it is poised to become a model for other nations seeking to transform their food systems. By prioritising sustainability, nutrition, and equity, Kenya demonstrates a commitment to building a resilient and inclusive food system that not only feeds its population but also safeguards the environment and promotes social well-being. The outcomes of the Food System Summit 2021 have served as a catalyst for change, inspiring Kenya to chart a new course towards a brighter, more sustainable future for its people.
The Stocktaking Moment in Rome will be a key cornerstone in Kenya’s journey to sustainable food systems, envisioning its commitments to eliminating hunger by 2030 and building strong sustainable, inclusive food systems. The UN Kenya must remain ambitious in its commitments, and will thus see the building of prosperity for the population fuelled by food systems that are inclusive, innovative, and data-driven. In renewing commitments ahead of the Stocktaking Summit the UN Kenya will ensure a food system that nourishes the population with a diverse diet that builds climate-resilient livelihoods in every region of the country.