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FAO Plans Broad Reforms For World Food Security Committee

The U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization’s (FAO) Committee on World Food Security (CFS) agreed Tuesday to “wide-ranging” reforms in an effort to make the committee the most “comprehensive international and intergovernmental platform dealing with food security and nutrition,” Xinhua reports (10/20). “The CFS reforms are designed to focus the Committee’s vision and role on the global coordination of efforts to eliminate hunger and ensure food security for all,” according to an FAO press release.

U.S. Food Aid Policy To Be More Flexible, Clinton, Vilsack Say

“The Obama administration wants more flexibility in how it allocates food aid dollars to complement its new strategy to help small farmers in poor countries boost their food production,” according to a conference call Friday with Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Reuters reports.

Opinions: HIV Vaccine; HIV Resources Help Promote Global Disease Control; U.S. Fight Against World Hunger

New York Times Opinion Examines HIV Vaccine Research Seth Berkley, president and chief executive of the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative, in a New York Times opinion piece examines how the “pessimism” over the recent controversy surrounding the results of an experimental HIV vaccine tested in Thailand “may ultimately thwart other efforts to…

World Food Day Marked, ActionAid International Releases Hunger Report

Today marks World Food Day, with the aim of bringing “awareness to the issue of hunger,” as the world faces “more mouths to feed but fewer farmers to grow the needed crops,” Deutsche Welle reports. The news outlet calls hunger an “income problem,” adding that “farmers will continue fleeing their fields for more lucrative opportunities in the urban areas unless incomes improve.”

Gates Foundation To Announce Grants To Promote Agriculture At World Food Prize Symposium

During a “keynote speech” Thursday at the World Food Prize Symposium in Des Moines, Iowa, Bill Gates, cofounder of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, is expected to announce $120 million in grants “to promote dynamic, home-grown, sustainable agriculture in Africa and India,” Agence France-Presse reports. In a statement, Gates said that “helping the poorest smallholder farmers grow more and get it to market is the world’s single most powerful lever for reducing hunger and poverty” (Zeitvogel, 10/15).

Drought Warnings In West Africa Raise Regional Food Security Concerns

A warning from Nigeria’s National Emergency Management Agency about drought in northern parts of the country has raised “concern about food security not only in Africa’s most populous nation but also in other parts of West Africa,” Reuters AlertNet reports.

New Food Reports Highlight Growing Global Hunger

Reforms are required to curb global hunger, which was already “growing” before the worldwide financial downturn, the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World Food Programme (WFP) said in a report, released in Rome, ahead of World Food Day on Friday, the BBC reports.

News Outlets Examine East African Drought

Sky News examines the drought in East Africa, focusing on its impact in Kenya. In “[o]ne of the worst-affected areas,” 70 percent of the “herds of cattle and goats have died in the past year, threatening the survival of entire communities who depend on them for their food and income,” according to Sky News.