U.S. Global Food Security Policy: Global Food Security Act
Global food security and nutrition programs help families and farmers build the foundations for more independent and prosperous lives. By sharing U.S. expertise in agriculture development and supporting programs that work in partnership with smallholder farmers and especially women, we can continue the progress already being made to tackle hunger and malnutrition under the Feed the Future Initiative. Last year alone, this initiative improved the nutrition of 12.5 million children and assisted nearly 7 million farmers and producers in improving their use of technology and land management practices.
The Global Food Security Act focuses on the following key areas:
- Developing a comprehensive global food security strategy to promote global food and nutrition security.
- Preserving the whole-of-government approach that focuses on coordinating the efforts of 11 departments and agencies to incorporate agricultural development, improve maternal and child nutrition, build the resilience of communities, and engage in partnerships with civil society.
- Aligning U.S. assistance with country owned strategies to enhance agricultural productivity, household income, local economies, and food and nutrition security to work toward the ultimate goal of transitioning countries away from U.S. assistance.
- Prioritizing the growth of small-scale producers’ income, productivity, and livelihoods and improving nutrition, especially among women and children.
- Leveraging unique partnerships with NGOs, the private sector, and reseach and academic institutions.
- Improving upon existing monitoring and evaluation practices to ensure the most effective use of U.S. taxpayer dollars.
- Authorizing appropriations to carry out international development assistance programs and activities under the strategy.
The Global Food Security Act was introduced with strong bipartisan support. The House bill (H.R. 1567) was introduced on March 24, 2015 by Representatives Chris Smith (R-NJ), Betty McCollum (D-MN), Edward R. Royce (R-CA), Eliot L. Engel (D-NY), Jeff Fortenberry (R-NE), Karen Bass (D-CA), Ander Crenshaw, (R-FL), Rosa L. DeLauro (D-CT), David G. Reichert (R-WA), Adam Smith (D-WA), Erik Paulsen (R-MN), David N. Cicilline (D-RI), James P. McGovern (D-MA), and is supported by other co-sponsors. The Foreign Affairs Committee unanimously approved the bill in mark up in April. The Senate bill (S. 1252) was introduced on May 7, 2015 by Senators Robert P. Casey, Jr. (D-PA), Johnny Isakson (R-GA), and is supported by other co-sponsors.
InterAction has played a leading role in convening a broad group of NGO and other stakeholders to help shape these pieces of legislation, and we will continue to work with Congress and the administration to ensure final passage of legislation that authorizes Feed the Future and a global food and nutrition security strategy that is inclusive of NGO priorities.
Photo: Krishnasis Ghosh