Last week, the United Nations announced that 2021 will be the International Year of Fruits and Vegetables. The purpose of this statement is to raise awareness of all the health benefits of fruits and vegetables, as we do not consume them in sufficient quantities.
The UN Secretary-General stated: “Fruits and vegetables are the cornerstone of a healthy and varied diet, provide the human body with abundant nutrients, strengthen the immune system and help reduce the risk of many diseases.” This lack of vegetables and fruits in our diet is linked to obesity, the leading cause of death in the world.
Current consumption of fruit and vegetables is below the 400 grams per day recommended by WHO. Therefore, some of the main objectives are awareness of the benefits of these foods, the promotion of healthy diets, the reduction of waste from food systems and the improvement of sustainability practices in production processes, as well as the integration of smallholder farmers. In addition to these goals, the UN also aims to strengthen developing countries to adopt new approaches and innovative technologies.
The UN sees it necessary to take advantage of the International Year to reconsider the relationship with how food is produced and consumed by encouraging comprehensive production and consumption processes to be more sustainable for the planet and human health. The Secretary-General took the opportunity to emphasize that the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development of the United Nations highlights the role of food systems in the fight against poverty, hunger and land protection.
One of the key moments of the International Year of Fruits and Vegetables will be the “Food Systems Summit,” at which the UN will call for intensified efforts to make food systems more inclusive, resilient and sustainable.
As far as Spain is concerned, the consumption of fruits and vegetables has increased considerably during the months of confinement, which is evidence of the relationship between health and a balanced intake of vegetables and fruits. In the national territory we have a unique variety of fruits and vegetables with excellent organoleptic properties that place us among the leading countries in agricultural production.
At Agrometodos we aim to improve the efficiency of nutritional programmes by increasing the quality and protection of crops through a non-chemical and waste-free struggle.