While strolling around in the market at evening time I observed a rush on the footpath, people were heading towards their destiny, some were buying vegetables, youngsters were busy drinking tea and smoking.

Coincidentally I saw a pair of shoes that were in a fancy shop covered to protect them from dust. I compared this with the vegetables sold on the footpath. Then I looked at a nearby meat shop where stray dogs were going in and out. I saw a few kids eating panipuri surrounded by garbage and then I saw a guy selling sekuwa following unsafe food safety norms.

We are so careless that food is sold on the footpaths (with high chances of being contaminated, full of dust and stray pets peeing around). These gave me a strange feeling and raised a question that has not been solved for a long time. Have we as citizens become really resilient and started compromising our health? Do we really care for food safety or food security or climate change which have big impacts on our food system?

Food security is easy access to healthy food. Similarly food safety is the safety of the food chain which will assure the quality of the food consumed and climate change is defined as each degree of change (either positive or negative) in the climate that could affect the food system.

A complete food system is a proper combination and any ups and downs will hamper our food system and sooner or later our food plate.

As per the ‘Economic Intelligence Unit’ of ‘the Economist’, Nepal scored 35.2 (highest score 89.5 – USA) out of 100 and was placed 79th out of 105 countries in the “Global Food Security Index 2012”. We need to make society aware about the importance of food security and indicators that will hit the whole food system. We forgot how to grow our own food and started depending on our neighbors.

Now we have enough fallow land but less crops. Our children are not aware that rice comes from paddy and is grown in fields. We are addicted to modern, comfortable life where we want things to be on the shelf in supermarkets. We no longer grow our own food, preserve it and maintain the food systems of our society.

We are ready to pay higher for food tagged organic, but we do not grow at least one plant ourselves. We do not properly implement the 3R’s (reduce, reuse, recycle) concept in our life style. I can plant a plant in my kitchen, use less polythene bags, focus more on 3R’s making my family members aware about food security, food safety and climate change for food sustainability.