Water is Life, Water is Food
As autumn leaves paint the world in fiery hues, we at Hungry Squirrel are preparing for an occasion that resonates profoundly with our ethos: World Food Day 2023. This day isn't just about celebrating our love for food; it's a poignant reminder of our collective responsibility to ensure food security and pave the way towards eradicating hunger globally.
The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations has aptly christened this year's theme as "Water is Life, Water is Food." 1 A succinct yet potent proclamation, it emphasizes the indispensable role water plays in nurturing life on our planet and forming the bedrock of our food systems.
Splash into the Theme: "Water is Life, Water is Food"
Water, the elixir of life, is fundamentally intertwined with our sustenance. Every bite we savour, every fruit we relish, and every grain we consume stands as a testament to the pivotal role water plays in agriculture and food production. The objective of this year's theme is to amplify global cognizance about the importance of water in our daily diets and the urgency to conserve this invaluable resource. 2
Moreover, water is instrumental in preserving health and hygiene standards vital for safe food consumption. As underlined by the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO), food standards are life-saving, and water is a crucial component in upholding these standards. 3
According the the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations:
- Only 2.5% is fresh, drinkable, and suitable for most uses, including agriculture which uses 72% of global freshwater. Rapid growth, urbanization, and climate change are straining this finite resource. Freshwater per person has dropped 20% recently due to misuse, over-extraction, pollution, and climate change.
- Now, 2.4 billion people live in water-stressed regions, including smallholder farmers, women, Indigenous Peoples, migrants, and refugees. Water scarcity is sparking increasing conflict. Plus, 600 million people relying on aquatic food systems are feeling the pinch of pollution and global ecosystem degradation. Our water resources are at a tipping point.
Making Ripples on World Food Day: How Can You Contribute?
World Food Day is not merely a date on the calendar; it symbolizes a global movement. It beckons each one of us to contribute to a future where food systems are sustainable and equitable. Wondering how you can make an impact? Here are some suggestions:
Be aware of your water usage in daily routines. Small adjustments like turning off the tap while brushing or curtailing shower time can have a significant impact.
Savour Seasonal & Local Produce:
Foods grown locally and in season typically require less water for transportation and storage. And they're bound to be fresher and tastier!
Waste Not, Want Not:
Remember, food waste equates to water waste. Be prudent with your food portions and strive to curtail food waste as much as possible.
Enlighten friends and family about World Food Day and the critical role of water conservation in our food systems.
This World Food Day, let's extend our appreciation beyond the food on our tables to the water that facilitated its journey from farm to fork. After all, "water is life, water is food." Let's ensure no one is left behind in our pursuit of sustainable food systems.
Join us at Hungry Squirrel as we raise a glass (of water) to World Food Day 2023!
1. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. (N.d.). World Food Day 2023. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, https://www.fao.org/world-food-day/en
2. Water Europe. (2023). World Food Day 2023. Water Europe, https://watereurope.eu/event/world-food-day-2023/
3. PAHO. (2023). World Food Safety Day 2023. PAHO, https://www.paho.org/en/campaigns/world-food-safety-day-2023