Food and nutrition protocol

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die070The idea of Milan’s Mayor to promote a nutrition and food protocol during EXPO 2015, taking as reference the Kyoto Protocol on the environment, is a challenge that all sector’s players need to face. Time is pressing, the issue deserves urgent attention: some programs have been already brought to earth. Firstly, Barilla, Italy’s largest pasta manufacturer, not only joined this initiative as supporter, but it made available the protocol developed by the “Barilla Center for Food and Nutrition”, result of five years of studies and evaluations. Other important organizations and institutions support this initiative, as the Italian Ministry of Agricultural Policies, Eataly, the WWF, Stop Spild of Mad, Wasted Food, Legambiente, Foodtank and many others. The protocol now calls on the civil society to take an active role in drafting this document promoted by Italy addressing the issue of safe, healthy and sustainable nutrition, whose final version will be presented on the occasion of the next Expo. Launched in Parma during Cibus 2014, this protocol is based on three key issues: to reduce food waste by 50% by 2020; to promote sustainable agriculture by limiting the land used for the production of biofuels and restricting financial speculation on food commodities; and to promote healthy lifestyles and fight obesity, preventing that nearly 870 million people across the planet go hungry while 1.5 billion struggle with obesity. This document, a sort of program and discussion platform, is continuously developing, and many new players have showed their interest, as Slow Food and the Municipal Administration of Parma. A more detailed document, closer to the final version, will be anticipated during the Forum organised by the “Barilla Center for Food & Nutrition” in December at the Bocconi University of Milan. However, as already said, a great involvement of the civil society is expected.  Everyone can join the initiative and be a vector of ideas and proposals that will contribute to the final wording of the protocol.  An important and basic role can be played by the younger generations, especially considering that this initiative is specifically addressed to young people. A world-wide nutrition and food protocol cannot be easily defined, just as it wasn’t easy to encourage the implementation of the Protocol on Environment, but it’s worth trying. That this challenge to the political leaders of the planet comes from Italy is a strong signal confirming Italy’s excellence in food, as well as the country’s attention to the needs of the weak, either represented by less-fortunate populations or future generations, who will have to face the problem of the decreasing renewal capacity of food supplies that will no longer meet the growing demand for food.