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  • Kazakhstan celebrates World Food Day with running race in Kazakh capital

Kazakhstan celebrates World Food Day with running race in Kazakh capital

18 October, 2021 12:04

Kazakhstan celebrated World Food Day on October 16 with a running race in the Kazakh capital Nur-Sultan, reports a Strategy2050.kz correspondent.

World Food Day is celebrated annually on October 16. Globally, nearly 150 countries marked the day with different events from marathons to hunger marches.

The running race began at 8 a.m. on Saturday. Michaela Friberg-Storey, the UN Resident Coordinator in Kazakhstan, also participated in the event. 

"Changes in food systems are not only possible but necessary. We need better food, better environment, better health and better life," she said.

Hunger has been a growing global challenge even before the pandemic, but with the ongoing pandemic, addressing hunger and food security and making sure no one is left behind and in hunger, remains ever more important. According to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the number of people afflicted with hunger increased in the last year to 811 million despite the fact that food produced globally would be sufficient to feed all on the planet. 

“The COVID-19 pandemic remains a global challenge, causing untold losses and hardship.m The impacts of the climate crisis are all around us. The lives and livelihoods of millions of people have been thrown into turmoil, with widespread suffering due to many natural disasters and humanitarian emergencies. Global food insecurity has not been this severe for years!” said QU Dongyu, Director-General of the FAO in his statement on the World Food Day celebration.

Addressing the issue also implies changing one’s lifestyle habits, most importantly trying to produce less or no food waste at all. According to the data provided by the FAO, 14 percent of food is lost and 17 percent is wasted. 

Kazakhstan’s President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev has repeatedly emphasized the need to join efforts to tackle food security. In his September address at the World Food Summit as part of the UN General Assembly Week, he said that climate change poses additional risks exacerbating the food security issues. 

“Kazakhstan, an active participant in the global food supply chain, is committed to the environmentally friendly and sustainable development of the agricultural sector. Our country is one of the top ten producers of food wheat and flour, exporting up to seven million tons of wheat per year. Despite potential constraints, we have also increased exports of oilseeds to more than 1 million tons. Nevertheless, the food system must have economic, social, and environmental sustainability," he said. 

Kazakhstan initiated the establishment of the Islamic Organization for Food Security, which now includes 36 countries with a total population of around 1.4 billion people. Within the framework of this organization, Kazakhstan regularly provides humanitarian aid in the form of wheat and flour to countries in need, including Afghanistan.