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Sunday May 19, 2024

New courses on food system transformation introduced

By Our Correspondent
April 18, 2024
Representational image of a spicy dish. — The News/File
Representational image of a spicy dish. — The News/File

Islamabad: In their commitment towards achieving SDG 2 i.e. Zero Hunger and enhancing food security, the National Agriculture Education Accreditation Council (NAEAC) and the Higher Education Commission (HEC), in collaboration with the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN), organised a two-day national consultation workshop on introducing new courses on food system transformation in Pakistan.

Pakistani universities and higher educational institutions convened to discuss the critical need for the integration of Food Systems and Food Systems Transformation into the curriculum of Pakistan's universities, focusing on agriculture and food sciences.

At the workshop's opening, Prof. Dr. Fayyaz-ul Hassan Sahi, Chairman of NAEAC, emphasised the crucial role of academia and NAEAC in enhancing understanding of food systems and transforming Pakistan's food systems. He expressed strong support and technical guidance from NAEAC to make this possible and highlighted the alignment of these efforts with NAEAC's vision to improve academic curriculum of agriculture and food science related degree programs.

Farrah Naz, Country Director at GAIN, discussed the importance of adopting robust approaches to improve understanding of food systems and their transformation. She emphasized the role of NAEAC, HEC, and PARC as key partners in creating an enabling environment for food systems transformation and improving food security in the country.

Faiz Rasool, Head of Policy & Advocacy at GAIN, outlined the key objectives of the workshop, including designing innovative curriculum modules, providing faculty training, and promoting interdisciplinary research collaborations to address food systems challenges.

Dr. Ghulam Sadiq Afridi, Member Social Sciences Division (PARC), highlighted the significance of advocating for food systems transformation in higher education and beyond. He emphasized the need for a robust framework to assess the impact of curriculum changes and educational initiatives, as well as the importance of tools like the Pakistan Food Systems Dashboard.

The chief guest, Dr. Ghulam Muhammad Ali, Chairman of PARC, emphasised the workshop's role in bringing together stakeholders such as academia, government, non-governmental organisations, and international partners to discuss course outlines, finalise action plans, and ensure alignment with national and international standards.

The workshop serves as a platform for collaboration among academia, government, NGOs, and international partners to drive progress in food systems transformation aligned with Pakistan's priorities and global goals.