Antigua and Barbuda is making plans to host a number of events to officially observe the International Year of Fruits and Vegetables.
As proclaimed at the 74th session of the UN General Assembly, IYFV 2021 is dedicated to raise awareness about the important role of fruits and vegetables in human nutrition, food security and health.
Cabinet has appointed a joint Steering Committee which comprises representatives from the Ministries of Agriculture and Health to organize a number of events which will be held throughout the year.
This committee is being chaired by Liaison Officer within the Ministry of Agriculture, Marcelle Freeland with Chief Nutrition Officer within the Ministry of Health, Samantha Moitt serving as Deputy.
A number of ideas are currently being discussed which will be finalized and announced shortly following the official Press launch of IYFV here in Antigua next week.
Although all the activities are yet to be finalized, a media blitz and a host of educational and training programmes are definitely on the cards.
The committee is particularly keen to organize these activities with all the COVID-19 Pandemic Protocols being observed, as it seeks to promote diversified, balanced and healthy diets and lifestyles through fruits and vegetables consumption.
Also, with the COVID-19 Pandemic, the need to transform and rebalance the way food is produced and consumed has only been further stressed.
Fruits and vegetables are good sources of dietary fiber, vitamins and minerals and beneficial phytochemicals.
FAO and the World Health Organization recommend that each adult consumes at least 400 grams of fruit and vegetables on a daily basis to prevent chronic diseases such as cancer, diabetes, heart disease and obesity as well as to counter micronutrient deficiency.
The Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, QU Dongyu launched the IYFV on December 15th 2020, with an appeal to improve healthy and sustainable food production through innovation and technology to reduce food loss and waste.
‘Fruits and Vegetables -Your Dietary Essentials’ is the theme for this year’s IYFV.
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