Search icon

UN Food Systems Summit is Impetus for Change

News Section Icon Published 9/20/2021

Webnews_EU_climate_report_700.jpg (1)

Today (Monday 20th September) we’re urging world leaders to harness the momentum garnered at this Thursday’s first ever United Nations Food Systems Summit to transform our broken global food system in order to tackle the urgent climate, health and nature emergencies.

A liveable future

Food is responsible for about a third of all greenhouse gas emissions and producing it takes up half the habitable land surface of the planet. Industrial animal agriculture is a major driver of biodiversity declines and the biggest cause of animal cruelty on the planet. The livestock sector alone is responsible for more greenhouse gases than the direct emissions of all the world’s planes, trains and cars put together.

“Transformation is essential if we are to create a liveable future for coming generations,” says Philip Lymbery, our Global CEO and UN Food Systems Champion. “National governments and international institutions have the power to make this happen so our future truly lies in their hands. Yet the issue of food and agriculture is strangely absent from the agenda of crucial forums such as COP26 in November. World leaders must act before it’s too late – there’s no time to lose.”

Clear and radical action is necessary

Compassion in World Farming has played an active role in the Summit’s Action Tracks and Sustainable Livestock working groups.

“Research clearly demonstrates that a global reduction in meat and dairy consumption is vital to keep us within planetary boundaries,” Philip adds. “We must also shift towards higher-welfare, nature-friendly farming – such as organic, pasture-fed or mixed crop and livestock systems – to prevent further catastrophic biodiversity loss.”

It is essential that world leaders address the broken global food system in future discussions around the climate, health and nature emergencies. We will continue to encourage clear and radical action in the run up to events like COP26 and beyond.

Have your say by taking part in this ‘people’s’ Summit.


You are using an outdated browser which we do not support. Please upgrade your browser to improve your experience and security.

If you have any further questions regarding this, or any other matter, please get in touch with us at We aim to respond to all queries within two working days. However, due to the high volume of correspondence that we receive, it may occasionally take a little longer. Please do bear with us if this is the case. Alternatively, if your query is urgent, you can contact our Supporter Engagement Team on +44 (0)1483 521 953 (lines open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm).