16 October is the annual World Food Day. It is celebrated worldwide. The day focuses on tackling global hunger. The theme for this year is “Our actions are our future. Healthy diets for a #Zero hunger world”. According to the United Nations, diets have shifted from plant based, fibre rich foods to refined starches, sugars, fats and processed meats. Thibhas negatively impacted livelihoods and people’s health with diseases such as diabetes and cancer on the increase.
World food day however seems to be a thing of the past in Zimbabwe where hunger and poverty are rife. Most families are no longer getting a balanced diet as they now rely on cheap alternatives to good food for sustenance. Food has become severely expensive. Even the working class can barely afford to eat a balanced diet.
Siba Mtongana, a celebrity chef from South Africa, recently exhorted parents to give their kids healthy meals. She wrote, “Every child on the planet has a right to grow up healthy with a nutritious diet”.
The International Committee of the Red Cross also looked back at the humanitarian aid it has provided to countries in need such as South Sudan where half of the population is starving.
World Food Day is a day to reflect on the items that one is consuming on a daily basis and where improvement needs to be done. It is also a day to reflect as a nation on the issues of food security and how Zimbabwe can be restored to be the bread basket of Africa yet again.