CEMAS celebrates its first anniversary with the publication of the book ‘CEMAS and the global challenges of sustainable urban food’. In addition to gathering recent data on hunger, food safety, obesity or waste in the world, the publication also provides information related to the activities carried out by CEMAS and its organisational structure. CEMAS, which was born with a global vision, cannot forget its geographical location: València. Therefore, at the end of this interesting portfolio, the book devotes a considerable section to L’Horta de València, a Globally Important Agricultural Heritage System, and two other centenary Valencian institutions: the Tira de Contar and the Tribunal of Waters.
In the presentation of the book, the mayor of València, Joan Ribó, announced the upcoming transformation of CEMAS into a foundation, which will enable the opening to other public and private entities and expand the funding sources. In parallel, the City Council will create a sustainable food section. The councillor responsible for the area, Alejandro Ramón, has said his goal will be to implement these policies locally supporting local production, responsible consumption and education for a healthy and sustainable diet. Activity related to food is thus maintained, according to municipal officials, both locally and internationally.
Vicente Domingo, director of CEMAS, has insisted on the need to rethink our food systems and has expressed hope that with the activity carried out by CEMAS, València will become a “global library of best practices in food systems”.
The publication includes plenty of graphic material of the opening ceremony chaired by Queen Letizia one year ago and that was the last official act of the former director general of the FAO, Graziano Da Silva. Today, agriculture councillor Alejandro Ramón remembered the visit that, on the occasion of the inauguration of CEMAS, activist Vandana Shiva made to L’Horta de València and her words when she saw it: “If you preserve all this, you are saved.”
The mayor, Joan Ribó, has also expressed a lot of concern about the high rates of obesity and overweight that occur in Spain (one quarter of the population). It is the second European country with the highest rate of obesity after the UK. Hence he considers it essential to implement educational policies on food and nutrition.