Food systems are central to addressing the global challenges of poverty, hunger, and the triple burden of malnutrition. Radical global changes, including emerging technologies both inside and outside the agriculture sector, are creating new challenges and opportunities. How these global trends are managed will be crucial to ensuring that food systems can deliver sufficient nutritious, affordable, and healthy food for all in a sustainable manner.
The African Research Universities Alliance (ARUA) Centre of Excellence in Food Security (ACoE) was established in 2018 as a partnership between the host institution – University of Pretoria – and collaborating partner institutions – the University of Ghana and University of Nairobi. The Centre was established with the aim of addressing the complexities of food security challenges and the need for a more holistic, systematic, and coordinated approach that takes into account multiple systems, sectors, and disciplines.
Given the current discourse around food systems, the need was identified to broaden the ACoE scope and adopt a food systems approach, rather than only focusing on food security, in order to address the global sustainable development agenda. In light of this, the ACoE has been renamed the African Research Universities Alliance Centre of Excellence in Sustainable Food Systems (ARUA-SFS). This change in name reflects the Centre’s broader objectives of reducing poverty and engaging relevant stakeholders and systems from farm to fork to deliver food security and nutrition for all.
The ARUA-SFS is set to become a leading platform for research partnership and collaboration across Africa. ARUA-SFS will continue to pursue its goal of creating a critical mass of talented researchers working together to maximize complementarity in order to transform Africa’s food systems.