ROME, June 23 (Xinhua) -- Farmers across the world must connect agriculture with the protection of biodiversity and the environment to have a sustainable food supply system in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) said Tuesday.
"Biodiversity is vital to improving agricultural and food production and maintaining our planet's resources and ecosystems," Qu Dongyu, director-general of the FAO, said in a statement after a videoconference discussion on the "transformative force of the 'farm to fork' and biodiversity strategies to build healthy and sustainable food systems."
Qu said that global food system sustainability required more than technical solutions. "This requires key policy decisions, and in this regard, the European Union (EU) just made a big step," he said, referring to the European Green Deal, a set of policy initiatives aimed at making the EU "climate neutral" and more sustainable no later than 2050.
The measure was approved by the European Commission in 2019 and by the European Parliament in January. "We are ready to work together with the environment sector; to accompany the changes across the entire food system, from production to consumption," Qu said.
Tuesday's discussion included input from senior European Commission officials in the sectors of health and food safety, agriculture, and the environment. Rome-based FAO has been headed by Qu, a former vice-minister of China's Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs, since July 31, 2019.