Mexico praised for putting food rights in constitution

A United Nations expert has praised Mexico’s constitutional reform that recognizes the right to food in the country and urged authorities to implement measures to give all Mexicans access to this human right.

“This is a great step forward for Mexico,” said Olivier De Schutter, who carried out an official visit to the country in June. “With this reform, Mexico joins a select group of countries around the world that have enshrined the right to food in their constitutions.”

“Now is the time to implement this reform for the benefit of all Mexicans by approving corresponding legislation,” he added.

De Schutter said the reform to articles 4 and 27 of the Mexican Constitution is particularly relevant in the current context of rising food prices as it highlights the need for states to guarantee access to adequate nutrition for their citizens.

Recently, a U.N. report warned that high food prices are likely to continue and possibly increase over the next decade.

The report recommended that governments have a transparent and predictable regulatory environment in place that promotes private investment and an increase in farm productivity.

For his part, De Schutter said it was necessary to encourage the Mexican government to design a national strategy for the realization of the right to food, by re-orienting public policies on rural development, agriculture, health and trade in line with the right to food, which should not merely be understood as the right to be fed, but rather the right to feed oneself.

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