Guelph MP Frank Valeriote is among those lamenting the failed World Food Summit in Rome last month, except there’s a difference —  Valeriote saw it crash firsthand, as a summit participant, and a member of the Canadian delegation.

In an opinion piece in today’s Guelph Mercury, the MP explains the initiative was doomed from the onset.  “Before the conference began, participants had already signalled their unwillingness to heed FAO’s call to commit 17 per cent of their foreign aid budgets for agricultural development, which UN officials placed at an annual cost of $44 billion,” he writes. “It was clear to me that — as with climate change — there is a demoralizing disconnect between the words and deeds on the part of the international community on the issue of world hunger and food security.”

So rather than spend time at the main meeting, Valeriote found his way to shadow conferences at which real farmers and farm organizations outlined their solutions. Read his full account here.

Canada’s Minister of International Cooperation Hon. Bev Oda led the delegation. She ‘s pictured below at the summit, among some international farm leaders. Photo courtesy of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

Bev Oda