Central America faces formidable food and nutrition challenges. Although undernourishment has decreased, food insecurity and stunting affect much of the Mesoamerican populations. At the same time, overweight and obesity are increasing in all age groups in Latin America and the Caribbean, contributing to the rise of non-communicable diseases.
But there are solutions to meet these challenges. They include multifaceted, multi-sectoral approach to transform agriculture and food systems to ensure high-quality diets. Policies that address overweight and obesity can also address malnutrition. School feeding and nutrition programs are an excellent way to provide meals to children and adolescents who suffer from food insecurity, and ensure high-quality diets for them. These measures need to be accompanied by sensible fiscal and pricing policies, as well as information campaign to change dietary patterns. Promoting greater regional integration and expansion of existing regional trade agreements are central, as trade plays a critical role in achieving food security.
With the Hand-in-Hand Initiative, FAO focuses on accelerating progress toward eliminating poverty and hunger.