International Year of Fruits and Vegetables (IYFV 2021)

In order to increase public awareness of the crucial role that fruits and vegetables play in human nutrition and food security, the United Nations has designated 2021 as the International Year of Fruits and Vegetables (IYFV).

Significance

The FAO and the World Health Organization (WHO) advise adults to eat at least 400 grams of fruits and vegetables per day. This will aid in the prevention of long-term illnesses like diabetes, cancer, obesity, and heart conditions. Additionally, it will aid in the battle against micronutrient shortages.

Knowledge and Instruction

An organization under the UN called the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) is in charge of organizing the annual commemoration. It has identified four areas of focus for the coming year:
  • To promote for the inclusion of fruit and vegetable cultivation in governmental agendas and to increase public understanding of the health, social, economic, and environmental benefits of these foods.
  • stimulate learning to better comprehend the role that fruit and vegetable systems play in emerging and developed nations' economies, societies, and environmental sustainability.
  • Policymaking: To promote the formulation of policies that will promote economic growth, food safety, a variety of healthy diets, public-private sector collaboration, and the emergence of innovative ideas and infrastructure.
  • Education: To support educational books and initiatives that promote the advantages of fruits and vegetables, such as school gardens, food literacy campaigns, and urban gardens. Additionally, to strengthen the capacities of women and young people in growth, including production, processing, and marketing

Goals of the IYFV in 2021

  1. Raising awareness of and focusing policy attention on the dietary and health advantages of consuming fruits and vegetables;
  2. Promoting eating of fruits and vegetables as a means of promoting a diverse, balanced diet and healthy lifestyle;
  3. Minimizing losses and waste in the production of fruits and vegetables;
  4. Comparing top practices for:
    • Promotion of fruit and vegetable consumption and sustainable production that supports sustainable food systems
    • Improved sustainability of trash reduction, recycling, retail, commerce, processing, transformation, and all linkages between these activities;
    • Integration of smallholders, including family farmers, into local, regional, and international production, value-added, and supply-chain networks for the sustainable production and consumption of fruits and vegetables, while also acknowledging the value of fruits and vegetables, including farmer-specific varieties and landraces, for people's food security, nutrition, way of life, and incomes;
    • Enhancing the ability of all nations, especially developing nations, to adopt cutting-edge techniques and technology in order to minimize fruit and vegetable loss and waste

Emphasizes food waste

The main objective of the International Year of Fruits and Vegetables is reducing food waste. Around 50% of the fruits and vegetables produced in developing nations are lost, according to FAO. According to FAO, post-harvest losses of fruits and vegetables are particularly significant in East and South East Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa. In East and South East Asia, storage losses are significant. The losses in sub-Saharan Africa happen on the farm. In South Asia, there is very little loss and waste (India is located in the South Asian region). The biggest transportation losses are found in south Asia, though.

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