Instrumentos jurídicos
Report of the World food Conference
Autores corporativos:
Asamblea General de la Organización de las Naciones Unidas (aprueba)
Organización de las Naciones Unidas (apoya)
Organización de las Naciones Unidas para la Agricultura y la Alimentación (canal)

   Descripción    Clasificación    Documento    Relacionados   
     Universal Declaration on the eradication of hunger and malnutrition
     Resolutions adopted by the Conference
     Concluding statements
The World Food Conferenc.

Convened by the General Assembly of the United Nations and entrusted with developing ways and means whereby the international community, as a whole, could take specific action to resolve the world food problem within the broader context of development and international economic co-operation.


The United Nations World Food Conference was held at Rome, Italy, from 5 to 16 November 1974.

135 representatives of States participated, invited in accordance with the Economic and Social Council resolution:

Also, it counted with the participation of representatives of the following liberation movements:

  • National Front for the Liberation of Angola
  • Mozambique Liberation Front (FRELIMO)
  • Palestine Liberation Organization
  • Peoples Liberation Movement of Angola
  • Seychelles Peoples United Party
  • Zimbabwe African Peoples Union (ZAPU).

The Secretary-General of the United Nations was present at the Conference, and the United Nations Secretariat was represented as follows:

  • United Nations Conference on Trade Development
  • United Nations Industrial Development Organization
  • United Nations Environment Programme
  • United Nations Disaster Relief Office.

The following United Nations bodies were represented:

  • United Nations Childrens Fund (UNICEF)
  • United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
  • Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
  • United Nations Institute for Training and Research
  • World Food Programme (joint United Nations/FAO programme).

The following specialized agencies were represented:

  • International Labour Organization
  • Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
  • United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
  • World Health Organization
  • International Bank for Reconstruction and Development
  • International Monetary Fund
  • World Meteorological Organization.

The Conference was also attended by representatives of the International Atomic Energy Agency and the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade.

26 observers from intergovernmental organizations also participated to the Conference, and representatives of 161 international and national non-governmental organizations invited also participated.

Universal Declaration on the eradication of hunger and malnutrition

  1. Every man, woman and child has the inalienable right to be free from hunger and malnutrition in order to develop fully and maintain their physical and mental faculties. Society today already possesses sufficient resources, organisational ability and technology and hence the competence to achieve this objetive. Accordingly, the eradication of hunger is a common objective of all the countries of the international community, especially of the developed countries and others in a position to help.

  2. It is a fundamental responsibility of Governments to work together for higher food production and a more equitable and efficient distribution of food between countries and within countries. Governments should initiate immediately a greater concerted attack on chronic malnutrition and deficiency diseases among the vulnerable and lower income groups. In order to ensure adequate nutrition for all, Governments should formulate appropriate food and nutrition policies integrated in over-all socio-economic and agricultural development plans based on adequate knowledge of available as well as potential food resources. The importance of human milk in this connexion should be stressed on nutritional grounds.

  3. Food problems must be tackled during the preparation and implementation of national plans and programmes for economic and social development, with emphasis on their humanitarian aspects.

  4. It is a responsibility of each State concerned, in accordance with its sovereign judgement and internal legislation, to remove the obstacles to food production and to provide proper incentives to agricultural producers. Of prime importance for the attainment of these objectives are effective measures of socio-economic trasformation by agrarian, tax, credit and investment policy reform and the reorganisation of rural structures, such as the reform of the conditions of ownership, the encouragement of producer and consumer co-operatives, the mobilization of the full potential human resources, both male and female, in the developping countries for an integrated rural development and the involvement of small farmers, fishermen and landless workers in attaining the required food production and employment targets. Moreover, it is necessary to recognize the key role of women in agricultural production and rural economy in many countries, and to ensure that appropriate education, extension programmes and financial facilities are made available to women on equal terms with men.

  5. Marine and inland water resources are today becoming more important than ever as a source of food and economic prosperity. Accordingly, action should be taken to promote a rational exploitation of these resources, preferably for direct human consumption, in order to contribute to meeting the food requirements of all peoples.

  6. The effort to increase food production should be complemented by every endeavour to prevent wastage of food in all its forms.

  7. To give impetous to food production in developing countries, and in particular in the least developed and most seriously affected amongst them, urgent and effective international action should be taken by the developed countries and other countries in a position to do so, to provide them with sustained additional technical and financial assistance on favourable terms and in a volume sufficient to their needs on the basis of bilateral and multilateral arrangements. This assistance must be free of conditions, inconsistent with the sovereignity of the receiving States.

  8. All countries, and primarily the highly industrialized countries, should promote the advancement of food production technology, and should make all efforts to promote the transfer, adaptation and dissemination of appropriate food production technology, for the benefit of the developing countries and, to that end, they should inter alia make all efforts to disseminate the results of their research work to Governments and scientific institutions of developing countries in order to enable them to promote a sustained agricultural development.

  9. To assure the proper conservation of natural resources being utilized, or which might be utilized, for food production, all countries must collaborate in order to facilitate the preservation of the environment, including the marine environment.

  10. All developed countries and others able to do so should collaborate technically and financially with the developing countries in their efforts to expand land and water resources for agricultural production and to assure a rapid increase in the availability, at fair costs, of agricultural inputs such as fertilizers and other chemicals, high-quality seeds, credit and technology. Co-operation among developing countries, in this connexion, is also important.

  11. All States should strive to the utmost to readjust, where appropriate, their agricultural policies to give priority to food production, recognizing, in this connexion, the interrelation between the world food problem and the international trade. In the determination of attitudes towards farm support programmes for domestic food production, developed countries should take into account, as far as possible, the interest of the food-exporting developing countries, in order to avoid detrimental effect on their exports. Moreover, all countries should co-operate to devise effective steps to deal with the problem of stabilizing world markets and promoting equitable and remunerative prices, where appropriate through reduction or elimination of tariff and non-tariff barriers on the products of interest to the developing countries, to substantially increase the export earnings of these countries, to contribute to the diversification of their exports, and apply to them, in the multilateral trade negotiations, the principles as agreed upon in the Tokyo Declaration[1], including the concept of non-reciprocity and more favourable treatment.

  12. As it is the common responsibility of the entire international community to ensure the availability at all times of adequate world supplies of basic food-stuffs by way of appropriate reserves, all countries should co-operate in the establishment of an effective system of world food security by:

    • Participating in and supporting the operation of the Global Information and Early Warning System on Food and Agriculture;

    • Adhering to the objectives, policies and guidelines of the proposed International Undertaking on World Food Security as endorsed by the World Food Conference;

    • Earmarking, where possible, stocks or funds for meeting international emergency food requirements as envisaged in the proposed International Undertaking on World Food Security and developing international guidelines to provide for the co-ordination and the utilization of such stocks;

    • Co-operating in the provision of food aid for meeting emergency and nutritional needs as well as for stimulating rural employment through development projects.

All donor countries should accept and implement the concept of forward planning of food aid and make all efforts to provide commodities and/or financial assistance that will ensure adequate quantities of grains and other food commodities.

Time is short. Urgent and sustained action is vital. The Conference, therefore, called upon all peoples expressing their will as individuals, and through their Governments and non-governmental organizations, to work together to bring about the end of the age-old scourge of hunger.

The Conference affirmed:
The determination of the participating States to make full use of the United Nations system in the implementation of this Declaration and the other decisions adopted by the Conference.

16th Plenary Meeting.
16 November 1974.

  1. ® Approved by the Ministerial Meeting of the Contracting Parties to the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade held in Tokyo, in September 1973.

Resolutions adopted by the Conference
The following resolutions were adopted on the above mentioned subjects:

  • Resolution I : Objetives and strategies of food production.

  • Resolution II : Priorities for agricultural and rural development.

  • Resolution III : Fertilizers.

  • Resolution IV : Food and agricultural research, extension and training.

  • Resolution V : Policies and programmes to improve nutrition.

  • Resolution VI : World soil charter and land capability assessment.

  • Resolution VII : Scientific water management: irrigation, drainage and flood control.

  • Resolution VIII : Women and food.

  • Resolution IX : Achievement of a desirable balance between population and food supply.

  • Resolution X : Pesticides.

  • Resolution XI : Programme for the control of African animal trypanosomiasis.

  • Resolution XII : Seed industry development.

  • Resolution XIII : International Fund for Agriculture Development.

  • Resolution XIV : Reduction of military expenditures for the purpose of increasing food production.

  • Resolution XV : Food aid to victims of colonial wars in Africa.

  • Resolution XVI : Global Information and Early Warning System on Food and Agriculture.

  • Resolution XVII : International Undertaking on World Food Security.

  • Resolution XVIII : An improved policy for food aid.

  • Resolution XIX : International trade, stabilization and agricultural adjustment.

  • Resolution XX : Arrangements for follow-up action, including appropriate operational machinery on recommendations or resolutions of the Conference.

Concluding statements
The Secretary-General of the Conference said that the Conference had opened under the shadow of a world food crisis, and that the attention of all mankind had been focused on its outcome. Some had expected dramatic new decisions which could resolve the world food problem overnight: others had been more sceptical and had taken the view that such world conferences seldom resolved any basic problems. He thought therefore that the Conference owed it to itself to make an objective and dispassionate assessment of the outcome of its work.

The first accomplishement, in his view, was the widespread interest and concern which the Conference had generated regarding the problems of hunger and malnutrition. Even the chronic problem of malnutrition with which somehow the world had regrettably begun to reconcile itself had come into sharper focus. Whatever differences of opinion there were within groups, everyone recognized that there was at hand a humanitarian problem which must be solved. It was in that spirit that all participants had shown their recognition that the world was living in an age of interdependence, and that no country, big or small, rich or poor, could live in isolation.

Secondly, the Conference had accepted the over-all assessment of the food problem and had recognized the seriousness of the food situation. It had risen to the occasion by displaying a heightened sense of urgency for agreeing on a broad strategy and on a minimum package of national and international action.

Thirdly, the Conference had accepted the basic conclusion of the Preparatory Committee, namely, that the solution of the food problem required co-ordinated action on three important fronts: a) to increase food production, especially in the developing countries; b) to improve consumption and distribution of food; and c) to build a system of food security.

Fourthly, regarding the objective of increasing food production, the decision of the Conference to set up an International Fund for Agricultural Development must be regarded as a notable achievement of the Conference. The implementation of many of the specific programmes and policies recommended by the Conference to increase food production would require a substantial increase in the flow of resources for agricultural development. Although it was only a start and the full potential of such a fund had yet to be developed, the co-operation of many countries with potential resources, particularly the response of the oil-producing countries, had been most encouraging.

Fifthly, the decisions of the Conference on food information and food security represented another landmark. For the first time, the international community was laying the foundations of a food security system which could ensure in future the availability of adequate food to all at reasonable prices.

Sixtly, the recommendation of the Conference that all donor countries should accept and implement the concept of forward planning of food aid, and should make all efforts to provide at least 10 million tons of grain as food aid every year, was another significant step which would not only insulate food aid programmes from the effects of excessive fluctuations in production and prices, but would also provide a more positive policy framework for food aid programmes in the future.

Those actions, taken together with the Conference resolutions on fertilizers, pesticides, seeds, land and water, research, nutrition, trade and some other important topics, constituted an impressive package of national and international action to come out of the Conference. Particularly encouraging also, was the emphasis the Conference had placed on the importance of mobilizing people, specially, the small farmer, for rural development, and on the balance between political, social and technical factors in determining priorities for agricultural development.

The main challenge for the national governments and the international community as a whole would now be the effective implementation of those resolutions. From the very outset, he had been emphasizing the need for effective follow-up action. During the past 20 years, there had been many conferences and congresses which had adopted very good resolutions and reports: but their implementation had been totally inadequate. The attention that the Conference had devoted to follow-up arrangements reflected the importance which it had attached to the subject. Nevertheless, the conclusion of the Conference in that respect was a compromise, which was perhaps understandable in a gathering of some 130 nations. He hoped that the co-ordinating mechanism recommended by the Conference would have the political authority and support that would be necessary to implement the various resolutions. That requirement was particularly relevant in view of the fact that the demands on the world community for co-operation and mutual assistance were growing in intensity from day to day.

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