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Food Systems

The sustainability of a food system is judged by its success in meeting multiple objectives related to the three pillars of sustainability: economic, social, and environmental. These objectives include providing safe and nutritious food for all; providing decent incomes and wages for farmers and those working across the system; and conserving natural resources for the benefit of current and future populations. These objectives align with USDA’s approach to sustainability.

The United Nations Secretary-General will convene a Food Systems Summit in September 2021 to launch bold new actions as part of the UN’s Decade of Action to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The stated goal of the Food Systems Summit is to transform the way the world produces, consumes and thinks about foods within the context of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and to meet the challenges of poverty, food security, malnutrition, population growth, climate change, and natural resource degradation. See the UN Food Systems Summit website for more information on the Summit. Updated Summit FAQs are found at