THE Food Policy Council, with support from Hivos, is tomorrow set to launch the Food Security Initiative spearheaded by CUTS Zambia and the Lusaka City Council (LCC) to help government shape policy in the agricultural sector.

In an interview, Consumer Unity Trust Society (CUTS) programmes officer consumer welfare Jane Zulu explained that the initiative was important because the country still did not have a food policy despite having an agricultural policy in place.

“On the 17th of this month, we will be launching a document called the Food Security Initiative in conjunction with HIVOS and the LCC. The Food Policy Council consists of different stakeholders in the food value chain because the food system has a lot of sectors involved and we recognise that Zambia does not have a food policy. We have an agricultural policy, but we don’t have a food policy, so we came up with a Food Policy Council to have every sector in the food value chain represented. So, we have farmers, we have Zambia Alliance of Women, we have the Ministry of Health, we have academia, UNZA, NRDC and the Council and various other stakeholders, who bring their own view because food is not just agriculture, we have to learn about it, we have to know the education part of it to understand what we eat. We also have informal traders because we realise that the informal traders provide access to food because 90 per cent of households in Lusaka buy their foods from the informal market,” explained Zulu.

“Zambia itself did not have any policy for the whole food value chain, we have different other policies, that’s how we came up with the Food Policy Council to address those issues. So, now, what we are launching is the document that we have come up with as a Food Policy Council. So, the Food Policy Council is the one that’s launching, CUTS and the Lusaka City Council are spearheading this, with support from Hivos.”