FAO highlights role of forest products in ending hunger

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A woman selling dried caterpillars in Kinshasha, Democratic Republic of the Congo (Photo@FAO)

Forest products, including insects, are critical to the fight to end hunger, according to a study by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

Although forests contribute to the livelihoods of more than a billion people worldwide, the agency says they are rarely considered in policies related to food security and land use.

FAO is hosting the three-day International Conference on Forests for Food Security and Nutrition which opened in Rome on Monday.

José Graziano da Silva is FAO Director-General.

"Forests provide protein, they provide fuel for cooking, fodder for animals, they protect the ecosystem and they provide income. Forests are a source of life but they do not always get the respect they deserve." 

FAO says wild animals and insects are often the main protein source for people in forest areas, with at least two billion people around the world consuming insects as part of their traditional diet.

Dianne Penn, United Nations.

Duration:  1’03″

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