The 2017 Global Food Policy Report shines a spotlight on the unique challenges and opportunities presented by urbanization for ending hunger and malnutrition and advancing the 2030 Agenda.
Rapid urbanization, particularly in developing countries, is reshaping food security and nutrition in both rural and urban areas. Over half the world's population now lives in cities, and by 2050, 66 percent of the world's population is projected to live in urban areas, with the increase concentrated in East and South Asia and Africa.
Urbanization and population growth are expected to put mounting pressure on the global food system as agricultural production comes under stress from environmental degradation, climate change, and extreme weather conditions. And as urbanization has accelerated in some developing countries, so has the triple burden of malnutrition: the coexistence of hunger, undernutrition, and overnutrition in the form of over-weight and obesity. The good news is that the world is paying attention. Urbanization was prominently elevated in the global development policy agenda in 2016: 167 countries adopted the New Urban Agenda at the Habitat III summit, an agenda that sets a standard for sustainable urban development.