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Food for All

BRUSSELS – What should the G-20 do to prepare us to confront food crises, now and in the future? World Bank President Robert Zoellick recently listed nine measures that the G-20 should adopt under its current French presidency. These range from improving information about grain stocks and developing better weather-forecasting methods to strengthening social safety nets for the poor and helping small farmers benefit from tenders from humanitarian purchasers such as the World Food Program.

Although welcome, these measures tackle only the symptoms of the global food system’s weaknesses, leaving the root causes of crises untouched. They may mitigate the consequences of peak prices, but they are inadequate to avoiding the recurrence of shocks, which can be accomplished if the G-20 acts on eight priorities.