Chapter 2

Key Inputs from Summit Workstreams


Brief paper specific to the FSS


The Committee on World Food Security (CFS), as reformed in 2009, is the UN’s foremost inclusive international and intergovernmental platform for relevant stakeholders to work together to ensure food security and nutrition for all. With a Rome-based Secretariat, CFS reports to the UN General Assembly through the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and to FAO Conference.  CFS develops and endorses policy recommendations and guidance on a wide range of food security and nutrition topics via an inclusive multi-stakeholder approach. CFS policy recommendations are negotiated and agreed by Member Nations with participation of civil society, private sector, UN experts, researchers, foundations and others.  The CFS High Level Panel of Experts provides evidence and scientific analysis, and the three Rome-based Agencies FAO, IFAD, and WFP and other Participants provide technical expertise.

Among CFS’s most impactful products to date are its 2012 Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries, and Forestry (CFS-VGGT), its 2014 Principles of Responsible Agricultural Investments (CFS-RAI), its Framework for Action for Food Security and Nutrition in Protracted Crises (CFS-FFA), and its 2021 Voluntary Guidelines on Food Systems and Nutrition (CFS-VGFSN), along with a host of Policy Recommendations including the 2021 Policy Recommendations on Agroecological and Other Innovative Approaches for Sustainable Agriculture and Food Systems that Enhance Food Security and Nutrition.  The HLPE has produced 16 excellent reports and other analysis that forms the basis upon which CFS policy convergence products are based.

The CFS considers the prioritization of the Right to Food as essential for ensuring food security and sustainable food systems. CFS has consistently stressed the right to adequate food as a key guiding principle in support of food security and nutrition. However, implementation of the right to food is uneven in practice, and much work remains to be done for its full realization.  The CFS adopted a sustainable food systems framework since it’s 2017 HLPE report on nutrition and food systems, which is the basis of the 2021 CFS Voluntary Guidelines on Food Systems and Nutrition (VGFSN) endorsed by 130 members at CFS 47 in February 2021. The Voluntary Guidelines are the only global policy instrument negotiated multilaterally on connections between food systems and nutrition.  They address the full complexity of our food systems and shortcomings, providing concrete recommendations for governments and others to address the causes of hunger and malnutrition in all its forms.  The Guidelines are structured around seven focus areas encapsulating cross-cutting factors that are relevant for improving diets and nutrition.  They are:  transparent, democratic and accountable governance; sustainable food supply chains to achieve healthy diets in the context of economic, social and environmental sustainability, and climate change; equal and equitable access to healthy diets through sustainable food systems; food safety across sustainable food systems; people-centered nutrition knowledge, education and information; gender equality and women’s empowerment across food systems; and, resilient food systems in humanitarian contexts.

The entirety of the CFS policy product toolbox, including access to all CFS HLPE reports and other products can be found at:

Chapter 1 – Overview of the Food Systems Summit Process

Over the course of 18 months, and in the midst of an unprecedented pandemic, the Secretary-General’s Food Systems Summit has engaged hundreds of thousands of people from around the world in an ambitious effort to accelerate action to transform food systems to realize the vision of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

In the context of the Decade of Action, as both a “People’s Summit” and a “Solutions Summit”, the Food Systems Summit has been a catalytic moment for global public mobilization and motivating actionable commitments by various stakeholders.

Chapter 2 – Key Inputs from Summit Workstreams

As part of the Summit process, over 147 UN Member States led National Dialogues. Their outcomes are being consolidated into national pathways, which are clear visions of what governments, together with various stakeholders, expect of food systems by 2030. Member States and a wide range of experts and stakeholders have contributed more than 2200 suggestions for accelerated action. The Action Tracks have clustered this rich input in a systemic way to build communities of practice and foster new partnerships. The Scientific Group consulted broadly and made a robust contribution to the evidence base underpinning much of the Summit’s work. The UN Task Force helped to mobilize over 40 key global institutions to bring knowledge and expertise. Through the Champions Network, Global Food Systems Summit Dialogues, and over 900 Independent Dialogues, people around the world have offered ideas on how to transform food systems.

Chapter 3 – Overview of the Pre-Summit

UN Food Systems Pre-Summit was held from the 26 – 28th July 2021, at the FAO in Rome and on-line attendance.  More than 100 countries came together over the course of three-days to discuss how they will transform their national food systems to drive progress against the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.

The official pre-summit programme featured sessions dedicated to four decisive “levers of change”, including women’s empowerment, and human rights.

Chapter 4- Summit

The UN Food Systems Summit will launch bold new actions, solutions, and strategies to deliver progress on all 17 SDGs, each of which relies to some degree on healthier, more sustainable, and equitable food systems. The Summit will awaken the world to the fact that we all must work together to transform the way the world produces, consumes, and thinks about food.

DISCLAIMER: The various sections which form this Compendium are the result of collective work involving thousands of individuals through the Summit’s structures and workstreams, collated and presented by the Food Systems Secretariat as a (necessarily non-exhaustive) compilation of knowledge, tools and analysis which can inform and support efforts at all levels to accelerate action for sustainable food systems and operationalize Sammy outcomes. This compendium is not a product of intergovernmental negotiations and — outside of international agreements — does not represent an endorsement of any particular position contained therein