The CSM Food Systems and Nutrition Working Group was reactivated in 2015 with the aim of drafting and consolidating CSM’s positions, vision and inputs into the CFS Voluntary Guidelines on Food Systems and Nutrition (VGFSyN).

For 5 years, CSM has been actively participating in the preparations and negotiations on the VGFSyN. The Working Group had high expectations for the outcome and considered the development of these guidelines as a crucial contributions towards the transformation of the current dominant food systems. The need to address the combined ecological, climate, justice, sanitary, nutritional and hunger crises is more urgent than ever. In February 2021, the CFS Plenary Session adopted the Guidelines following an intense and controversial policy negotiation process.

After a collective and thorough internal assessment, the CSM, not with easiness, expressed its disappointment and disheartenment vis-à-vis the outcomes and the deviation of this policy convergence process from its initial ambition. In their final version, the Guidelines fail to meet the ambition, mandate and aspirations that this process should have had, if the interest of rights-holders and the planet had been placed before the logic of profit and markets. They are far from CSM’s expectations and priorities and could even undermine progress achieved so far.

Despite having been negotiated in the midst of a health and planetary crisis, they fail to give guidance for the transformation of food systems that is needed to address this crisis on top of pre-existing ones, and which negatively affect the lives of so many while benefiting only a few.

This Working Group has concluded its main work but will continue monitoring the use and application of the Guidelines.


Isabel Alvarez Vispo – Urgenci (Spain)

Ramona Dominicioiu – La Via Campesina (Romania)


Isabel Alvarez Vispo – Urgenci (Spain)



Marisa Macari – Consumers International (USA/Mexico) 

Technical facilitators

Stefano Prato – Society for International Development (SID)

Magdalena Ackermann – Society for International Development (SID)

Sofia Monsalve – FIAN

Laura Michéle – FIAN // Charlotte Dreger – FIAN

CSM Resource person for the CFS Technical Task Team

Stefano Prato – SID (alternate)

Chair of the CFS Open-Ended Working Group on Nutrition

Hans Hoogeveen (The Netherlands)

Liliane Ortega (Switzerland)

Khaled El Taweel (Egypt)

To see the full list of the Working Group’s members please click here

Join the Working Group

...And transmit your community’s political demands for food sovereignty and biodiversity-based food systems at the UN Committee on World Food Security!


Updates and Events

The Civil Society and Indigenous Peoples’ Mechanism for relation with the CFS 

kindly invites to a Virtual Public Briefing: 

“Priorities and Key Messages to the upcoming CFS Negotiations 
on Agroecological and other Innovative Approaches”

Thursday,  25 March, 13:15-14:15h CET

Speech by Shalmali Guttal | 10 February | CSM Policy Briefing Good afternoon everyone. My name is Shalmali Guttal and I am joining you from India. My organisation, Focus on the Global South, is a participating organisation in the Civil Society and Indigenous Peoples’ Mechanism—the CSM. We are also in the CSM Liaison Group on the UN Food Systems Summit. I will share with you our key messages r...

During the 3rd and final round of negotiations of the Voluntary Guidelines on Food Systems and Nutrition (VGFSyN), the representative of the United States proposed the following addition to the text: “Treaties in the list below are only relevant for the parties to each respective treaty; other documents listed are not legally binding and reference to them shall not be interpreted as a sign of...

Since the onset of the negotiations of the CFS Voluntary Guidelines on Food Systems and Nutrition, CSM has been highly committed and made many substantial contributions to bring in the priorities of its constituencies. CSM also  repeatedly expressed its concerns about an increasingly problematic way in which the process was conducted since April 2020, and the lack of ...

News and updates from the Food systems and Nutrition Work Group between 2012 and 2016



25 – 29 January 2021

Third Round of CFS virtual policy negotiations: Guidelines on Food Systems and Nutrition

On Friday 18th of December, the second official week of CFS policy negotiations ended. This second week was expected to finalize the Guidelines on Food Systems and Nutrition, scheduled to be endorsed at CFS 47th Plenary Session in February 2021. The week from 14 to 18 of December, with a total amount of 45 hours of virtual meetings in five days, has nevertheless confirmed that the content of this Guidelines is still highly controversial and still reflects very polarized positions on key aspects of the text, on which consensus was not possible to reach. Despite the additional number of informal friends of the chair’s meetings hold throughout October and November, to better prepare the ground of this second week of negotiations, the Guidelines were not finalized and more time will be needed to achieve the task.

The CSM strongly hopes that this third round of negotiation, will offer the opportunity to retain the original ambition of this text and process. During the second week of negotiation, as during previous Friends of the Chair meetings, the sustainability dimension of healthy diets, the ecological dimension and public objectives purposes of food systems, as well as the crucial role of local food systems and markets, were strongly opposed and attacked by a group of member states, together with the human rights-based approach and the recognition of the urgent need to transform current food systems.

Background documents:

Revised draft for negotiations

EN |  FR | ES | ZH | RU | AR



14 – 18 December 2020

Second Round of CFS virtual policy negotiations: Guidelines on Food Systems and Nutrition 

According to the timetable of the process, this should be the final round of negotiations of the Guidelines. This weeks aims at generating consensus on the entire text of the Guidelines in order to proceed with their adoption at the CFS 47th Plenary Session.


Background documents:

Revised draft for Negotiations – VGFSyN

EN | FR | ES | AR | RU | ZH

Document on Sections 3.3 and 3.4 and paragraph 56 (as discussed at the last FoC meeting on 3 December 2020)

EN | FR | ES | AR | ZH | RU




person-768582_19209 October 2020

First meeting of the Friends of the Chair

In order to allow the finalization of the Guidelines during the foreseen second week of negotiation (dates to be identified), a series of Friends of the Chair (FoC) meetings, scheduled between October and early November, on specific parts of the text will be taking place in the upcoming weeks starting on October 9th. The aim of this informal meetings is to facilitate the consensus building around some particular issues and controversies. It seems that no interpretation will be officially granted by the CFS, directly challenging the inclusiveness of the process. As a basis for this FoC meetings a Chair’s proposal which was prepared based on the inputs submitted during the first round of negotiations on the VGFSyN will be used. A note with modalities for this meetings was also shared.

Find here the agenda for the 9 of October

Calendar of upcoming Friends of the Chair meetings:

  • Friday, 9 October (13.00-17.00)
  • Monday, 19 October (13.00-17.00)
  • Friday, 23 October (13.00-17.00)
  • Monday, 26 October (13.00-17.00)
  • Friday, 30 October (13.00-17.00)
  • Friday, 6 November (13.00-17.00)


IMG_105518 September 2020

CFS Advisory Group and Bureau meeting

During the CFS Advisory Group and Bureau meeting of 18 September, an evaluation session of this first week of negotiation took place and CSM reminded CFS members that diversity and plurality of voices are central for the legitimacy and ambition of this process, sharing the expectation that this approach would be maintained in the next steps of the process. Please find here CSM Contributions.

Due to the multiple challenges of this virtual modality and a lack of clarity on the methodology of the negotiation exercise during this first week, a first reading of the text was possible, consisting in a comprehensive annotation of the different text changes’ proposals, but without having the possibility to negotiate those text proposals, seeking convergence among the different and sometimes very polarized positions. The CFS has foreseen only a second week of negotiation to finalize the Guidelines on time for their approval in February, during CFS 47th Plenary Session, and so far, no concrete dates were identified in the busy calendar of the RBAs, but it was announced that they might  take place between the end of November and the beginning of December.


8M-Argentina7-11 September 2020

CFS virtual policy negotiations: Guidelines on Food Systems and Nutrition

The first round of virtual policy negotiations will take place from 7 to 11 of September 2020. As today the second round of negotiations has not been scheduled yet. The Guidelines are expected to be adopted during the upcoming CFS 47th Plenary Session of February 2020. Please find below relevant background documents:


red-poppy-4247574_192016 July 2020

CFS Matrix

The OEWG Chair shared on July 16th, the updated version of the Matrix document that includes text proposals from CFS stakeholders on the draft for negotiations of the Voluntary Guidelines on Food Systems and Nutrition (VGFSyN). According to the OEWG Chair, the document is intended to provide a clear picture of various positions among the membership concerning the document and identify the most contentious paragraphs — in view of the need to find compromise solutions during negotiations. CSM raised its concerns on the use and objective of this document during the last OEWG meeting, as written submissions were not adequately reflected and it is difficult to understand who is proposing changes. The OEWG Chair’s communication also said that additional information regarding dates, format, and modalities for negotiations will be discussed by the CFS Bureau at its meetings of 29/30 July.



11 June 2020

CSM Written submission

The OEWG Chair invited CFS members and participants to submit in written the contributions and comments shared during the OEWG meeting of May 28.


indian-1417068_192010 June 2020

Letter of the CSM Working Group to the OEWG Chair, CFS Chair and CFS members and participants

On June 10 the CSM has sent a letter to the CFS OEWG Food Systems and Nutrition Chair, CFS Chair and CFS members and participants expressing its concerns and proposals on the ongoing policy convergence process.


asia-2929637_192028//29 May 2020

Two-full days OEWG virtual meetings

The meetings are intended to be an opportunity to discuss and share the latest view and text proposal received from CFS stakeholders. As agreed, the meeting is organized for comments and explanations, but no formal negotiations will be conducted. These proposals and comments are included in a matrix document, to be used as a preparatory tool for the Chair and Secretary ahead of formal negotiations on the Draft for Negotiations – pending their scheduling. Please note that depending upon feedback received and progress made, the OEWG Chair may adjust the schedule, possible completing the consultation on 28 May.

Background documents: 


0b0785eb4d8fc130f96108e15bb189dc--tropical-plants-tropical-gardens11 May 2020

Deadline for text proposals on the policy negotiation draft

The new OEWG Chair, Ambassador Hans Hoogeveen requested CFS members and participants to send written text proposals track changes to the latest draft of the Guidelines, indicating specific priorities and rationales for such changing. These proposed changes will be circulated to members and discussed at the next OEWG meetings scheduled for the last week of May 2020 (calendar invitations and a revised timeline will be circulated shortly).

Written contributions received by CFS:

ArgentinaAustraliaBrazilBrazil Africa InstituteCabo VerdeCanadaCGIARChileCSMDominican RepublicEUFAO,  FTAGAINHarvest Plus, IndonesiaIPES FoodJapanMalaysiaNew ZealandNorway,  PhilippinesPSMRussian FederationSwitzerlandThailandUNICEFUN Nutrition NetworkUniversity of OsloUSAWFOWFPWHOWorld Resources InstituteWTOWWF


instagram-2556428_192014 April 2020

OEWG Virtual Meeting 

The OEWG Chair will present the latest version of the Voluntary Guidelines on Food Systems and Nutrition (VGFSyN). The translation in UN languages will be available from April 8. OEWG members will have the opportunity to share views on the document, highlight the main elements they support, as well as flag issues on which they have a divergent opinion. This meeting should also be able to give indications to the CFS Advisory Group and Bureau, about the way forward and possible adjustments to the work plan of this workstream , which was originally expected, before COVID-19 pandemic, to be concluded after two rounds of presential negotiations in May and July, at the upcoming CFS 47th Plenary session.

Background documents for the meeting:


avocados-3399809_192016 March 2020

Draft for negotiation of the Guidelines

Please find here the last draft for negotiations shared by the CFS Chair of the OEWG as a result of the written submissions received in February. At this link you will also find the communication of the OEWG Chair. Translations in all UN languages were made available on April 8th.




5 February 2020

Submission of written inputs on the first draft the Guidelines 

All the comments gathered during the OEWG meeting that took place on 29 January 2020, in addition with the more specific written comments submitted by CFS members and participants by February 5th will constitute the basis for the elaboration of a new version of the Draft CFS Guidelines on Food Systems and Nutrition that will be released on March 12. CSM submitted its written inputs on the first draft of the CFS Guidelines on Food Systems and Nutrition. You can find them here! You can also find below the video interventions delivered by the CSM Working Group during the last OEWG on Food Systems and Nutrition (29 January 2020):

Find here the other written submissions received by the CFS:

ArgentinaAustraliaBrazilCanadaChileCosta RicaCSMFTA_CGIAREUEU BisFAOGAINGlobal Alliance for Future of FoodICBAIDLOIFADInternational Dairy FoundationIPES-FoodIranIsraelJapan JICAJapan, MAFFMaliMexicoMiddlebury CollegeNear EastNew ZealandNorwayNorway BisOHCHROne Planet SFPSPhilippinesPSMPSM BisPSM_ALAIABPSM_Cargill,  PSM_DanonePSM_GDPPSM_ICBAPSM_IDFPSM_IFBAPSM_NMPF_USDECRussian FederationSenegalSouth AfricaSwitzerlandTetra _LavalThailandTunisia,  United KingdomUN EnvironmentUN NetworkUNICEFUnited StatesUnited States bisUniversity of GroningenUniversity of OsloUNSCNUNSR Right to FoodVenezuelaWAN_Brighter_Green_Pro_VegWFPWHOWorld Obesity Federation and Lancet Commission on ObesityWTOWWF


vegetables-60730729 January 2020

CFS Open-Ended Working Group (OEWG) Meeting

The first meeting of the CFS OEWG on Food Systems and Nutrition of 2020 will be focused on gathering feedbacks and comments from the first draft of the Voluntary Guidelines circulated in December. CFS Background documents:

fish-422543_192020 December 2019

First Draft of CFS Voluntary Guidelines on Food Systems and Nutrition

On 20th December 2019 the First Draft of the CFS Voluntary Guidelines on Food Systems and Nutrition were published. Translations in other UN languages will be available in January 2020. This draft is the result of all inputs received during OEWG meetings, CFS Regional Consultations and the online consultation! The document will serve as a basis for the first OEWG meeting of 2020 on 29th of January!


bananas-2346692_192029 November 2019

CFS Open-Ended Working Group (OEWG) Meeting

The next OEWG session will take place on November 29 . The focus of the session will be on the outcomes of the six regional consultations and the e-consultation in preparation of the next draft (Draft One) of the Guidelines. Further details on the agenda of the meeting below:

Background Documents:


Process 2018-2019


gbagyi-woman-2791749_1920October 2019

CFS 46th Plenary Session and CSM Forum

The CSM WG was very active during the October weeks with its presence in Rome on the occasion of the CSM Forum and CFS 46th Plenary Session while organising its attendance at the CFS Regional Consultations on Food Systems and Nutrition in Latin America and North America!

CSM Forum (12-13 October 2019)

During the CSM Forum agenda an entire session was dedicated to the Food Systems and Nutrition workstream. This space was important to recap the process, prepare the CSM contributions to the CFS Plenary discussions and to present the CSM advanced draft vision on Food Systems and Nutrition.

CFS 46th Plenary Session (14-18 October 2019)

The originally foreseen CSM participation in the CFS panel was removed prior to CFS 46, and the time granted to speak from the floor was less than one minute. In this sense, the space for participation was minimal. Isa Alvarez (Urgenci), as the WG coordinator spoke on behalf of the CSM. You can find CSM Plenary Statement here. At this link you will find the video! (unfortunately only available in Spanish). A second part of the session was dedicated to assess the progress made in implementing the UN Decade of Action on Nutrition. There was no time for contributions from the floor on this second agenda item. At this link you can find the CFS 46 Final Report, and also find the first and second part of the verbatim of the session.

CSM Side Events (15 October 2019)

The CSM WG on Food Systems and Nutrition co-organized two side events during the CFS 46th Plenary Week. A joint side event with the Private Sector Mechanism (PSM) moderated by the Chair of the Food Systems and Nutrition workstream, Liliane Ortega (Switzerland) and a joint side event together with the CSM WG on Agroecology. The summary of the first side event titled “Food Systems and Nutrition Guidelines: proposed pathways by the Private Sector and Civil Society” can be found here, while the summary of the second side event titled “Re-thinking and re-shaping Food Systems through Agroecology” can be found instead at this link.


women-1063326_1280August 2019

CSM Vision Document on the CFS Guidelines for Food Systems and Nutrition – Advanced Draft


It is unacceptable that in a world of plenty more than 821 million of our brothers and sisters go to bed hungry every night and over half a billion are obese. More than 150 million children suffer from stunting, over 50 million children are wasted, more than 40 million children are obese, and approximately 800,000 babies die every year because they are not optimally breastfed. It is time to act to tackle the injustice of malnutrition.

We reaffirm that food is the expression of values, cultures, social relations and peoples’ self-determination, and that the act of feeding oneself and others embodies our sovereignty and autonomy. When nourishing ourselves and eating with our family, friends, and community, we reaffirm our cultural identities, interdependence with nature, control of our life course and human dignity. Nutrition is foundational for personal development as well as for a harmonic collective relationship with nature. This understanding of nutrition creates a space of convergence of many of our struggles for food sovereignty, human and nature’s health and well-being.  Understanding the challenge of malnutrition in all its forms therefore requires a holistic and multidisciplinary analysis, one that combines the political, cultural and technical perspectives. Above all, it requires recognizing the need for justice, the appreciation for diversity and the values of human dignity, equity, sustainability and sovereignty. In this sense, we will only be able to overcome malnutrition if we are able to mobilize our communities and build a large movement across different spaces and levels with that purpose. (Find here the complete vision)



1 July – 2 September 2019

CFS Online Consultation on the upcoming Voluntary Guidelines on Food Systems and Nutrition 

The CFS e-consultation outcomes will contribute to the preparation of the First Draft of the Voluntary Guidelines, which will be negotiated in spring 2020. If you are interested in contributing to the online consultation kindly write to to join the CSM Working Group on Food Systems and Nutrition. Deadline is the 2nd of September!

Through this e-consultation, CFS stakeholders are kindly invited to answer the following guiding questions using the proposed template:

  1. Does Chapter 1 adequately reflect the current situation of malnutrition and its related causes and impacts, particularly in line with the goals and targets of the 2030 Agenda? What are the underlying problems that currently hinder food systems to deliver healthy diets?
  2. What should be the guiding principles to promote sustainable food systems that improve nutrition and enable healthy diets? What are your comments about the principles outlined in Chapter 2? Are they the most appropriate for your national/regional contexts?
  3. In consideration of the policy areas identified in Chapter 3 and the enabling factors suggested in paragraph 41 of the Zero Draft, what policy entry points should be covered in Chapter 3, taking into account the need to foster policy coherence and address policy fragmentation?
  4. Can you provide specific examples of new policies, interventions, initiatives, alliances and institutional arrangements which should be considered, as well as challenges, constraints, and trade-offs relevant to the three constituent elements of food systems presented in Chapter 3? In your view, what would the “ideal” food system look like, and what targets/metrics can help guide policy-making?
  5. How would these Voluntary Guidelines be most useful for different stakeholders, especially at national and regional levels, once endorsed by CFS?



16 July – 25 October 2019

Calendar of CFS Regional Consultations

Find below the dates of the CFS Regional Consultations on the zero draft of the Voluntary Guidelines on Food Systems and Nutrition. A CSM Focal point for each sub-region will be appointed to facilitate CSM participation at regional level. Please find here the concept note and related guiding questions.

  • Africa: Addis Ababa (Ethiopia), 16-17 July 2019
  • Asia and the Pacific: Bangkok (Thailand), 25-26 July 2019
  • Europe: Budapest (Hungary), 17-18 September 2019
  • Near East: Cairo (Egypt), 25-26 September 2019
  • Latin America and the Caribbean: Panama City (Panama), 28-29 October 2019
  • North America: Washington (USA) 24-25 October 2019 (tbc)


13 October 2018, Rome, Italy - Civil Society Mechanism Forum (CSM). FAO Headquarters (Green Room). Photo credit must be given: ©FAO/Giulio Napolitano. Editorial use only. Copyright ©FAO.

30 May 2019

CFS OEWG Meeting on Food Systems and Nutrition

This last CFS Open-ended meeting will debate on the zero draft of the Voluntary Guidelines

Background documents: Zero draft of the Guidelines on Food Systems and Nutrition





22 March 2019

CSM written comments to the Preliminary version of the zero draft of the Guidelines


8 March 2019

CFS OEWG on Nutrition and Food Systems

The purpose of this OEWG is to get specific feedback and suggestions on how to improve the Preliminary version of the Zero draft of the Voluntary Guidelines. Following the meeting, the opportunity to provide written comments will be given to CFS stakeholders. The inputs received will be considered in the preparation of the Zero Draft that is planned to be finalized by the end of April. 

The Zero Draft will then be translated in the six UN official languages and presented and discussed during the following consultation process: an OEWG meeting on 30 May 20191, the five regional multistakeholder consultations planned between July and October, and the e-consultation taking place between June and August. 

The outcomes of all these consultations will feed the preparation of the First Draft of the Voluntary Guidelines that is expected to be finalized by the end of 2019. 

Background documents:


food-2343893_19207 March 2019

CSM Public Briefing

Priorities and Perspectives of Civil Society and  Indigenous Peoples’ organizations  towards the CFS Voluntary Guidelines on Food Systems and Nutrition

Date and Venue: Thursday, 7 March, 

14:00-15:30, Mexico Room, FAO HQ



30 January 2019

CFS Open consultation on Nutrition and Food Systems

Inter-sessional open dialogue on the HLPE Report on Nutrition and Food Systems. (Webcast link)

Background documents:

Guiding questions:

  1. Moving beyond typologies: what information do policymakers need to make decisions about food systems?
  2. How the broadly shared expectations towards healthy diets from sustainable food systems could guide the preparation of VG?
  3. How can policies contribute ensuring or promoting healthy diets through value chains and within food environments?

17 October 2018 – CFS 45th Plenary Session




Food Systems and Nutrition

Background documents for the session:

19 October 2018 – CFS 45th Plenary Session




Food Systems and Nutrition: Good Practices and Lesson Sharing (for information) – Red Room

23 July 2o18

CFS Advisory Group and Bureau meeting

Background document for this agenda item:

14 June 2018

CFS OEWG on Nutrition

This meeting aims at finalising the draft ToRs for the future CFS policy convergence process on Nutrition and Food Systems. The meeting will also discuss on the decision box to be approved in Plenary and on possible inter-sessional events for 2018/2019.

Background documents:

8 May 2018

Deadline to submit written comments on the second draft of the ToRs

30 April 2018

CFS OEWG on Nutrition

The meeting will discuss the second draft of the Terms of Reference and the possibility of holding inter-sessional events

Background documents:

5 April 2018

Written Comments

Deadline to submit written comments to the draft ToRs for the CFS policy convergence process on Nutrition and Food Systems

28 March 2018

CFS OEWG on Nutrition

The meeting aimed at having a first round of discussion and comments to the draft Terms of Reference for the upcoming policy convergence process on Nutrition and Food Systems.

Background documents:

27 March 2018

The HLPE Report on “Nutrition and Food Systems” is finally available in all UN languages!

8 March 2018

6-8 March 2018

Meeting of the CSM Working Group on Nutrition 

MYPoW Extract 2017-2018

CFS engagement in advancing nutrition (2018-2019)


10. The Committee in 2016 endorsed a strategy on CFS engagement in advancing nutrition (CFS 2016/43/9) which called for CFS to accelerate its efforts, and proposed a framework to step up its contribution to the global fight against malnutrition in all its forms, consistent with its mandate, also in the context of the UN Decade of Action on Nutrition (2016-2025) and of the implementation of the ICN2 Framework for Action.

Objectives and expected outcomes

11. The strategy foresees CFS work to advance global nutrition efforts along three interconnected and mutually reinforcing functions: policy convergence; lessons and good practice sharing; and tracking progress.

12. In accordance with the strategy, CFS is expected to start substantive discussions in 2018-2019 to develop Terms of Reference (TORs) for endorsement at CFS 45 in 2018 to guide future policy convergence work on nutrition and food systems.

13. The TORs will:

  • Define key terms, set parameters for policy convergence, clarify objective, scope and purpose;
  • Identify the main thematic area(s) warranting specific attention from CFS in line with its mandate and added value, and without duplication and interference with other fora, with specific settings to be considered (e.g. regional, urban or rural), and define key terms;
  • Identify the type of policy instrument that would be developed, with provisions included on expected results, primary users, modalities for dissemination and use by CFS members and stakeholders in the context of the Nutrition Decade Work Programme, and facilitate potential partnerships in the application;
  • Define the budget for 2019 in accordance to the identified planned activities;
  • Outline the process to present CFS guidance for endorsement possibly in CFS 46.

14. Once approved, these TORs would form a substantive part of the eventual agreed outcome and lead to policy guidance presented to the subsequent Plenary for endorsement.


15. This workstream will build on the outcomes of the work carried out by CFS in 2016-2017 biennium. The preparation of the TORs will benefit from the findings of the report of the High-Level Panel of Experts on Food Security and Nutrition (HLPE) on Nutrition and Food Systems to presented to CFS 44; the outcomes of the 2017 intersessional events (on investment for healthy food systems; impact assessment of policies to support healthy food environments and healthy diets; and on achieving by 2025 the Global Target on Stunting) held to develop a common understanding of some of the most prominent issues around nutrition; and lesson-sharing and progress reporting activities held at CFS 44, to take-stock of progress, identify challenges and specific experiences worth sharing.

16. In 2017-2018, an Open-Ended Working Group (OEWG) on nutrition will hold inclusive discussions, resulting in the development of TORs presented for endorsement by CFS 45 in 2018.

17. In 2019, the Open-Ended Working Group is expected to continue its work and develop and agree on policy guidance related to nutrition and food systems. It should also explore whether additional work or activities are needed for in the framework of the Nutrition Decade 2016-2025 Work Programme, and look into the need to update the 2016 agreed proposal on “CFS engagement in advancing nutrition” accordingly.

18. The CFS work on Nutrition may benefit from the e-consultations, which could be carried out through the FSN Forum in the 2017-2018 intersessional period. Where possible, CFS will benefit from the organization of regional consultations from FAO.

CFS 44 Plenary Session Outcomes – 13 October 2017

Launch of HLPE Report on Nutrition and Food Systems

Intervention of María Teresa Álvarez – WAMIP, Argentina, on behalf of the CSM Working Group on Nutrition 

As a pastoralist woman from the Chaco ecoregion in South America, I am part of an organisation that is based on the ancestral knowledge of pastoralist livestock family herders. We re-create animal diversity, a food system which provides us with food and a livelihood – we feed and NOURISH ourselves with foods gathered from forests, pasturelands, rivers and, of course, from our livestock. As pastoralists, we exercise our right to food and nutrition thanks to our mobility, which enables us to be self-sustainable across different ecosystems.

Moving ahead: We are committed to addressing this process with a clear vision; “to guarantee NUTRITION for all”. To this end, we need to appropriate ourselves of our ancestral knowledge and ensure that it is transmitted from generation to generation, as it is underpins cultures that translate into distinct modes of production, such as agroecological systems, which guarantee nutrition in all its dimensions. Ending hunger is not simply an added value for free trade, nor about causing malnutrition by reducing real food to fun products that catch people’s attention, but rather about recognising the value of our traditional diets and guaranteeing their sustainability without interrupting natural production cycles. Keep reading…




Intervention from Isabel Álvarez Vispo – Urgenci, Spain, on behalf of the CSM Working Group on Nutrition

We, the Civil Society Mechanism, wish to comment on the Summary and Recommendations of the report, as these are the only parts that we have been able to access in different languages.

First of all, we wish to thank the HLPE for the great effort in writing this report, and in integrating nutrition in the CFS, by linking nutrition to the different dimensions of food systems. Civil society has always defended the need for a holistic human rights-based vision of nutrition that goes beyond dietary patterns, and thus we believe that it is essential to have a broader perspective that covers the life span of food: from the land and seeds with which it was produced, to the plate.

We welcome the report’s inclusion of certain aspects that we have recently been insisting on, such as the issue of conflict of interests and a focus on the most vulnerable. Nonetheless, we are concerned by other aspects of this report. Keep reading…




Good practice and Lessons sharing for improved nutrition

Intervention Ali Aii Shatou Member of the CSM Coordination Committee for the Indigenous Peoples’ Constituency – Nutrition 10 October 2017

We, the delegates of indigenous peoples who are from across the six regions recognised by the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous issues , organized here through the Civil Society Mechanism, have actively followed the process of the CFS activities and the resulted reports. We are deeply concerned by the increasing number of people who are suffering from hunger and malnutrition, majority of the cases are reported by people living in rural areas and in areas populated by indigenous peoples. At the same time, Indigenous Peoples have been among the most important providers of food security, good nutrition and healthy diets – not only today, but over generations and centuries.

The Committee on World Food Security (CFS) is the only international and intergovernmental platform in the United Nations system, where governments, representatives of Indigenous Peoples, fisherfolks, smallholder and family farmers, pastoralists, landless, women, youth, food and agricultural workers, consumers, urban food insecure, UN organizations and the private sector collaborate with the aim of ensuring the realization of the right to adequate food. Keep Reading…




Update on ICN2 Reporting

Intervention of Peggy Pascal, Action Contre Le Faim, France, on behalf of the CSM Working Group on Nutrition

Food Systems based on highly processed “industrialized” food ( empty in macronutrients and essential Vitamins) are making us sick . As the HLPE report recalls it, one out of three people on our earth are suffering from one form of malnutrition and it will be half of the humanity in 2050.

Until when are we going to tolerate that? Since the ICN2 conference in 2014, we have encouraged and welcomed commitments for nutrition from members states whether it was in the SDGs or by launching the decade.

As civil society we have been on your side to make concrete propositions and we have launched the people decade on nutrition, in 2014, during the ICN2, to highlight our determination and commitment to build good nutrition for all. Keep Reading…




Save the date! Tuesday 10 of October 2017 18.00-19.30 CSM Side Event on Nutrition – Philippines Room

Building C Flr 2 (Languages: EN/ES/FR)

Reclaiming healthy and sustainable diets as a public good. Public policies and investments on nutrition as critical instruments to guarantee human rights and redress the livelihoods, environmental, health and fiscal implications of food systems (CSM Working Group on Nutrition) 

Download the flyer HERE

Moderator: Stefano Prato, Society for International Development, Technical Facilitator of the Nutrition Working Group of the Civil Society Mechanism


  • Marité Alvarez, World Alliance for Mobile Indigenous Peoples (WAMIP), Member of the Coordination Committee of the Civil Society Mechanism
  • Cecilia Rocha, Lead Author of the Health Report, IPES-Food

Interactive Discussion Round Table. With the participation of:

  • Lorena Rodríguez, Head of Food and Nutrition Department, Ministry of Health of Chile
  • Pierfrancesco Sacco, Permanent Representative of Italy to FAO, IFAD and WFP
  • Khaled El Taweel, Alternate Permanent Representative of Egypt to FAO, IFAD and WFP and Chair of the CFS OEWG on Nutrition
  • Isabel Álvarez, Urgenci Global Network, Member of the Coordination Committee of the Civil Society Mechanism



CFS Plenary Session 9 -13 October 2017

Session Documents for Nutrition. Nutrition session 10 October 2017 (all day):

HLPE Report on Nutrition and Food Systems: Summary and Recommendations


22 September 2017

3rd CFS inter-sessional event


20 July 2017

CFS Advisory Group and Bureau meeting


1 June 2017

Meeting of the CFS OEWG on Nutrition 

The meeting will discuss about options for the policy convergence process This item follows the informal conversations held with CFS members and participants at the beginning of May.  The discussion will be guided by the same three questions used in the informal meetings:

a) What kind of policy guidance would you see coming out of the process in the next biennium? (Policy recommendations based on HLPE recommendations? More substantial guidance?)

b) Which issue would benefit from CFS policy guidance? (Focus on added value of CFS)

c) What would be the best process, guaranteeing inclusiveness, preparation and value added, as well as (cost-)effectiveness and relevance in the framework of the ongoing Decade of Action on Nutrition? Should it involve consultations? At what level (regional? Global E-consultation?)? At what stage of the process?

A first version of the submission to the MYPoW will be submitted and discussed during the meeting. The OEWG will also touch upon the CFS 44 “Nutrition Day”.

Background documents:


26 May 2017

2nd CFS Inter-sessional Special Event on Nutrition


9 May 2017

1st CFS Inter-sessional Special Event on Nutrition


10 February 2017

OEWG on Nutrition

The main objectives of this meeting are the following:

  • To discuss CFS’ contribution to the UN Decade of Action on Nutrition 2106-2025. The discussion will be based on a presentation of the Decade’s Work Programme by FAO and WHO.
  • To discuss the proposed format of the 1st  intersessional event on nutrition on “Investments for Healthy Food Systems”;
  • To decide on the theme of the 2nd intersessional event based on the themes received from the OEWG Members;
  • To discuss the preparation to the “Lessons learned and good practices on nutrition” session which will be held in CFS44.

 Background Documents:

December 2016

Contribution of the CSM Working Group to the HLPE Zero Draft Report on “Food Systems and Nutrition”


4 November 2016

OEWG on Nutrition 

The meeting will be webcasted at this link (9.30-12.30 Rome time CET)

Message of the OEWG on Nutrition Chair Khaled El Taweel

The main objectives of this meeting are: to discuss the HLPE zero-draft report on Nutrition and Food Systems; and to discuss and decide on the OEWG Workplan for the 2016-2017 intersessional period. The HLPE will give a brief presentation to the OEWG on the state of the work of the Nutrition and Food Systems report. Coming to the Workplan, the draft under discussion focuses on two expected outcomes: the agreement of the Plenary on CFS’ contribution to the UN Decade of Action on Nutrition; and building the information base to determine the nature and scope of possible policy convergence work on nutrition. The Workplan foresees activities under each of such outcomes for the OEWG’s consideration and decision. During the meeting I would suggest to focus our discussion on how we can make the best use of the activities foreseen for the upcoming intersessional period to prepare for the policy convergence work on nutrition that will commence after CFS44. I am looking forward to your guidance on how each of such activities can contribute to this objective and which should be the priority focus areas. The endorsed Proposal on nutrition foresees that intersessional events may be based on briefs of UNSCN. After consultation with UNSCN, it was agreed to propose a list of policy papers that will be finalized and made available in time to possibly form the basis of the planned events.

Background Documents for the meeting:


24 October 2016

HLPE Zero Draft Report on Food System and Nutrition

Extract from MYPoW 2016-2017 on CFS role and contribution to nutrition– 2016-2017

  1. As recognized in the Rome Declaration on Nutrition adopted at the Second International Conference on Nutrition (ICN2) in November 2014, “malnutrition in all its forms, including undernutrition, micronutrient deficiencies, overweight and obesity, not only affects people’s health and wellbeing […] but also poses a high burden in the form of negative social and economic consequences to individuals, families, communities and States”. The complexity and multidimensionality of the causes and factors leading to malnutrition are also acknowledged. In addition, the effects of economic growth, urbanization, and changes in relative prices of food also influence changes in diets and food systems and lead to an acceleration of the nutritional transition, as was identified in the HLPE note on “Critical and emerging issues in the area of food security and nutrition”.
  2. After CFS 42 in October 2015, a Task Team which will include, among others, representatives of the Rome-based agencies and UN agencies and bodies with a mandate in nutrition will be invited to identify, with the support of the CFS Secretariat, the opportunities arising from the Rome Declaration on Nutrition and the Framework for Action adopted at ICN 2, and relevant Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for greater CFS involvement, and present a proposal on potential areas where CFS can play a major role, in line with its mandate, particularly addressing issues of policy convergence and coordination at global level. The Task Team should conclude its work by the end of December 2015.
  3. The work of the Task Team will be discussed within the Open-Ended Working Group (OEWG) on nutrition which will be formed to prepare a proposal on a CFS workstream on nutrition to be discussed by the Bureau, in consultation with the Advisory Group, and presented for endorsement at CFS 43 in October 2016. The proposal should result in a clear vision for CFS’ role on nutrition, with a workplan leading to concrete outcomes for 2017 and beyond. The OEWG will report to Plenary at CFS 43 and CFS 44.
  4. October 2016

    Meeting of the CFS Bureau and Advisory Group – 8 July 2016

    May 2016 

    3rd and last OEWG Meeting – 29 April 2016

    CSM Speaking Points

    Outcomes of the OEWG of 29 April elaborated by the CFS Secretariat

     2nd OEWG Meeting – 25 February 2016

    CFS Document:

    CSM Contributions to the OEWG meeting

    Summary of CSM Interventions

    Overview of some important actors in nutrition

    Advisory Group and Bureau Meeting 2 February 2016

    E-Consultation on the HLPE Report on Nutrition and Food Systems (25 January 2016)

    Find here the CSM CSM Submission to HLPE e-consultation on Food System & Nutrition

1st OEWG Meeting – 14 January 2015

CFS Documents:

CSM Contributions

CFS OEWG Outcomes

Process in 2015

Preamble from the CSM Working Group Preliminary Vision on Nutrition (2015)

“Understanding the challenge of malnutrition in all its forms requires a holistic and multidisciplinary analysis, one that combines the political and technical perspectives. Above all, it requires recognizing the need for urgency and justice, the appreciation for diversity and the values of human dignity, equity, sustainability and sovereignty. It is our common understanding that food is the expression of values, cultures, social relations and people’s self-determination, and that the act of feeding oneself and others embodies our sovereignty, ownership and empowerment. When nourishing oneself and eating with one’s family, friends, and community, we reaffirm our cultural identities, our ownership over our life course and our human dignity. Nutrition is foundational for personal development and essential for overall wellbeing.”

Read the CSM Working Group Preliminary vision on Nutrition

CSM contribution to the CFS Advisory Group and Bureau meeting on Nutrition (24 November 2015)

CSM Plenary Statement on SDG at CFS 42 (October 2015)

Process 2013-2015:


Stineke Oenema, ICCO

CSM Resources persons for the CFS Technical Task Team:

  • Stineke Oenema – ICCO
  • Biraj Patnaik – Right To Food Network India
  • Boureima Allaye Touré  – OMAE
  • Claudio Schuftan – People’s Health Movement


This CSM Working Group has been established in 2012 to interface with the CFS Task Team on nutrition terminology. The Task Team was responsible for developing an “options paper” for consideration of the CFS. The 37th Session of the CFS called on “the Bureau, in consultation with the Advisory Group and joint Secretariat, as well as with relevant international organizations, in particular World Health Organization (WHO) and United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), to propose options on the meaning and different uses, if any, of the terms “Food Security”, “Food Security and Nutrition”.

Please find here the full list of the Working Group members

 Archive of documents


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