The Milan Pact on Urban Food Policy, a commitment celebrated among 100 cities in 2015 during the Milan Expo under the slogan "Nourishing the Planet, Energy for Life", was coined to address concrete challenges and solutions among cities, considering all the food-related public agendas.
The commitment was conceived in 2014, by the then Mayor of Milan, during an event in the city of Johannesburg with the C40 Big Cities Group Summit for Climate Leadership.
The Pact was co-drafted by several cities - with the support of the United Nations (UN) through its agency for food and agriculture - FAO, in addition to the C40 and the European Union (EU).
Each year the signatory cities (250 currently) meet for the Milan Pact Global Forum. The city of Rio de Janeiro - that joined the Pact in 2016 and hosted the regional Latinoamerican meeting in 2019 - also hosted this year’s 8th MUFPP Global Forum. On October 17, 18 and 19, 2022, with the theme "Food to Feed the Climate Justice: Urban Food Solutions for a Fairer World", cities around the world met and debated possibilities for pushing forward their food agendas. This was the first time a city in the Global South has hosted the Global Forum.
The experience of LUPPA - LAB on Urban Food Policies, a project of the Brazilian institute Comida do Amanhã co-organized by ICLEI South America - was shared in the panel "Towards sustainable governance of urban food systems in Brazil and Latin America" on October 18th. It was an opportunity to showcase experiences of participatory and interdisciplinary Brazilian municipal food policies. The panel speakers included public authorities of Araraquara, Curitiba, Osasco, Maricá, Salvador and Rio Branco, cities that have joined LUPPA, and the coordinator of food agenda of FAO, Cecilia Marrochino, and focused on the role of local governments for the development of fairer, sustainable and circular food systems.
Comida do Amanhã also participated in some panels held by its partners. On October 17, we were at the panel "School feeding: strengthening local food systems and use of biodiversity" held by Embrapa Food and Territories and in partnership with FAO. On the 18th, the Comida do Amanhã was part of the panel "Cooperation from city to city: lessons, opportunities and challenges" organized by FAO Americas, Rikolto and ICLEI South America, joined by south american and african cities, and also on the panel "Promoting social justice through fair trade and agroecology" with Instituto Regenera and IDEC.
On the 19th, the last day of the Forum, Comida do Amanhã participated in the parallel event "Sustainable Future Dialogues", coordinated by the Brazilian institute Clima e Sociedade (ICS) and the German Embassy in Brazil, with the theme “Climate and Consumers”.
The Milan Pact and the strengthening of local governments
Currently, 250 cities in the world are signatories to the Milan Pact. In Brazil, the Municipalities of Araraquara, Belo Horizonte, Curitiba, Maricá, Osasco, Porto Alegre, Recife, Rio de Janeiro, Salvador e São Paulo signed the commitment with MUFPP. Both regional and global events offer the opportunity for cities around the world to exchange knowledge, build partnerships and celebrate progress in implementing their food policies through the Milan Pact Awards. "The exchange of knowledge and shared experiences between cities around the world accelerates the development of public policies, thus enabling more efficient urban food systems," says Mónica Guerra, director of Comida do Amanhã.
LUPPA was presented as a platform that supports urban food agenda while producing data and content on municipal experiences. "The work of Comida do Amanhã, its partners, and the municipalities allows us to present experiences and outcomes regarding the development of public food policies and to share them with other participants in the event," says Francine Xavier, director of Comida do Amanhã.
The Milan Pact and the products and studies connected to it are benchmarks for LUPPA - from idealization to implementation. Juliana Tângari, director of Comida do Amanhã and general coordinator of LUPPA, comments on the importance of the event being held in Brazil as a great opportunity to put urban food policies and strategies definitely on the centre of the political agenda of Brazilian cities. "The Milan Pact is a reference for us, a global commitment to the urban food agenda and its multidisciplinary approach, besides the very serious work this international community is doing for advancing the design of indicators and monitoring mechanisms for the actions at municipal level. We had the chance to watch experiences from cities all over the world, learn from them and also share what we have already advanced. Cities have increasingly positioned themselves as protagonists of food systems transformation, and it is with great joy that we took to the event a little of our experience with LUPPA", says Juliana.
The eighth world edition of the event allowed governments, civil society and international organizations to participate in plenary sessions, parallel sessions, interactive activities and watch the Milan Pact Award Ceremony, where some municipalities were awarded with resources and projection of their initiatives in food policies. The Brazilian cities awarded were Araraquara - with mention in the category Governance - and Curitiba - with mention in the category Food Production.