The term ‘Food Security’ is often bandied about loosely by politicians, bureaucrats, farmers, businessmen, consumers, and even scientists, without many having a proper understanding of the underlying meaning thereof and the contributing factors thereto.
While the concept of food security was only really formally described from the 1970’s onwards, following major global crises and famines, it has stood at the heart of agricultural and food policy in many countries over centuries.
It was again a crisis that precipitated a review by governments of the ‘food security’ concept. It was specifically the global food crisis of 2007/08, coupled to the financial meltdown that made governments especially aware of the need for their respective countries to be much more food secure. As such Food Security became a very high priority agenda item at many high-level multilateral forums, such as the G8, G20, OECD, etc. South Africa followed suit and developed its own contentious ‘National Policy on Food and Nutrition Security’. More»