Food Security and Sustainable Farming 

Market Innovation for Sustainability and Inclusion

As defined in the 2009 Declaration of the World Summit on Food Security: “Food security exists when all people, at all times, have physical, social and economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food, which meets their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life.”



Four food security dimensions can be identified:

  1. Food availability

Is there an adequate supply? Is the type of food sufficient? Is there diversity? Globally availability has improved. However, despite over the last two decades food supplies have grown faster than the population in developing countries, malnutrition remain a major challenge. Moreover, world’s population is expected to increase by 2 billion in next 30 years to reach almost 10 billion in 2050.

  1. Food access

The ability to access food depends on two factors: economic and physical. Economic access is determined by disposable income. Physical access is determined by the availability and quality of infrastructure and marketplaces.

  1. Food utilization

Utilization describes the socio-economic aspects determined by knowledge, habits, and capacity. Assuming that nutritious food is available and accessible, the household has to decide what food to purchase, how to prepare it as well as how to consume and allocate it within the household.

  1. Stability

Stability is given when the supply on household level remains constant during the year and in the long-term. This depends on both foot supply over time (that can fluctuate seasonally or external shocks), and food prices / incomes.


Food security is so important because it represents an important set of determinants of health, specifically those related to nutrition.

— Food Availability and Stability can be improved through innovation and improvement of production technology and efficient supply chains (marketplaces)

— Health can be improved though education, Food utilization and quality of Food Availabilty

— Food Access and affordability can be promoted by efficient marketplaces and adequate households income


Agricultural Marketplace Project


Although World’s Food availability is today enough for all

1) About 1 billion people are undernourished….and another 1 billion are obese

–> over 30% of undernourished people live in South Asia, another 25% in Sub-Saharan Africa (however African population is growing faster)

2) Quality of food consumed is a major concern. Food origin is difficult to track

3) Farmers in developing countries do lack adequate finance and market access

–> Family farms represent over 90 per cent of all farms globally, and produce 80 percent of the world’s food in value terms (FAO) . They are key drivers of sustainable development, including ending hunger and all forms of malnutrition. Yet they are especially vulnerable to food insecurity – poverty and hunger are most acute among rural populations.

4) The number of extreme disasters related to climate shocks has doubled since the early 1990s. Tragically, the populations who can least afford it are paying the price.

5) Agriculture is expected to face increasing water risks in the future (OECD)

–> Agriculture accounts for 70% of water use worldwide, and leads to negative environmental externalities, causing significant economic impact on the sector and beyond. Agriculture remains a major source of water pollution; agricultural fertilizer run-off, pesticide use and livestock effluents all contribute to the pollution of waterways and groundwater.

6) About 30% of food produced is wasted

7) Consumers can benefit from more direct and transparent link to producer, both locally and internationally

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