SHiFT at the 5th Global Food Security Conference

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Researchers from the CGIAR Research Initiative on Sustainable Healthy Diets through Food Systems Transformation (SHiFT) presented research at the 5th Global Food Security Conference from April 9-12, 2024, in Leuven, Belgium. The conference program included plenary sessions, parallel oral presentations, poster presentations, debate sessions and world cafés.

The conference gave SHiFT researchers from Work Package 4 on Trade-off Scenario Analysis an opportunity to share with other academics their work on applying global and national-level models to analyze trade-offs of different food system scenarios across multiple countries, and in Bangladesh, specifically. For example, the macro-modelling approach applied to Bangladesh showed the trade-offs between environmental, health and socio-economic trade-offs in different diet scenarios. The microsimulation approach answered questions like which districts in Bangladesh are most likely to achieve Sustainable Development Goal 2 (Zero Hunger) and where are the overlaps between climate and food insecurity hotspots in the country. The model can be used to draw attention to what districts are prone to both flooding and undernourishment.

Another set of presentations introduced methodologies developed by SHiFT researchers to assess diet quality and the food environment in low- and middle-income countries. One presentation gave an overview of a new method policymakers and evaluators can use to measure diet quality called the Reference Diet Deprivation (ReDD) index. The ReDD index can be derived from commonly available household consumption survey data, eliminating any need or cost for data collection. A 2023 article in Food Policy explains more about the ReDD index. Another presentation introduced the Retail Diversity Index (RDI), a simple tool that can be used to assess the diversity of foods that retailers offer to consumers in informal and formal settings in the food environment.

SHiFT contributions to the 5th Global Food Security Conference 

Title Date SHiFT Focal Point
Poster presentation: A multi-country analysis of socio-economic and environmental trade-offs to assess future food system transformation Tuesday, April 9 Thijs de Lange, WUR
Oral presentation: Assessing food and nutrition security in space and over time in Bangladesh: A dynamic spatial microsimulation approach Wednesday, April 10 Michiel van Dijk, WUR
Poster presentation: The retail diversity index: A new metric to characterize consumer’s food environment in low-and-middle-income countries Wednesday, April 10 Ricardo Hernandez, Alliance of Bioversity International and CIAT
Oral presentation: Household’s food consumption decisions, impacts, synergies, and trade-offs on food system outcomes – evidence from northern Vietnam Thursday, April 11 Ricardo Hernandez, Alliance of Bioversity International and CIAT
Oral presentation: Validation of a new food-based diet quality measure for use with household consumption survey data in developing countries Thursday, April 11 Olivier Ecker, IFPRI

The International Food Policy Research Institute and the Alliance of Bioversity International and CIAT lead SHiFT in close collaboration with Wageningen University and Research and with contributions from the International Potato Center. SHiFT combines high-quality nutritional and social science research capacity with development partnerships to generate innovative, robust solutions that contribute to healthier, more sustainable dietary choices and consumption of sustainable healthy diets. It builds on CGIAR’s unparalleled track record of agricultural research for development, including ten years of work on food systems and nutrition under the CGIAR Research Program on Agriculture for Nutrition and Health.

Header image: Farmer in Bangladesh transports produce to the market via bicycle cart. Photo by International Food Policy Research Institute from Flickr

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