June 2, 2011. Brasília, Brazil. On January 1, 2003, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva took office as President of Brazil pledging that every Brazilian would be able to eat 3 meals a day. The Zero Hunger program was at the heart of this promise.
José Graziano das Silva, candidate to the post of FAO Director-General, was the architect of Zero Hunger, a program that has contributed to lift out of extreme poverty 24 million people in five years and to reduce undernourishment in Brazil by 25%.
The recently published book “The Fome Zero (Zero Hunger) Program: the Brazilian Experience” revisits the program.
Organized by José Graziano da Silva, Mauro Del Grossi and Caio Galvão de França, the book traces Zero Hunger back to its original proposal presented in 2001, shows how the project gradually became a government strategy and other government programs incorporated its twin-track approach and inclusive social-economic development model, measures its impact in hunger and poverty reduction in Brazil and based on the lessons learned presents policy recommendations that can be adopted in other countries.
“We believe in the importance of family farming for global food security, which should be encouraged in order to ensure the human right to food, job and income generation, expanded sustainable production, and consumption of healthy food products,” says Minister of State for Agrarian Development Afonso Florence in the foreword to the English edition of the book.
Based on the right to food paradigm Zero Hunger proposes a series of structural, specific and local policies and uses the twin-track approach to fight hunger and promote food security. They include incentives to small-scale farming, linking small farmers to local markets, income generation programmes, strengthening of social networks and cash transfer programmes.
“Individually, these policies can generate very important results. When they are linked, the benefits are multiplied. This is one of the keys that explain the success of the Zero Hunger Programme”, summarizes Graziano da Silva.
The book is available at: http://www.nead.gov.br/portal/nead/nead-especial/?page=2