The Coalition of Action on Healthy Diets from Sustainable Food Systems for Children and All (HDSFS)

WFP_Samantha Reinders
© WFP/Samantha Reinders


Every year, unhealthy diets cause 11 million deaths and a further 420 000 people die from consuming unsafe foods. Currently, over 3 billion people cannot afford a healthy diet.

Unhealthy diets are related to 6 of the top risk factors for the global burden of disease

In 2021, the UN Food Systems Summit (UNFSS) brought together governments, civil society, businesses, Indigenous Peoples, young people, international agencies, farmers, consumer advocates, food system champions and many others with a stake in food systems transformation. Many Member Countries and stakeholder groups involved in the UNFSS called for the urgent need for action to deliver healthy diets from sustainable food systems for all. People, policies, programs and practices typically focus on sector-specific goals, meaning fragmentation (siloed working) is the norm rather than the coordination and co-benefits of multi-duty action on diets for both nutrition and environmental sustainability goals.

A broad coalition, inclusive of multiple actors, is thus vital to align and strengthen actions across sectors and the different elements of food systems at all levels.

HDSFS purpose, goal and vision


Accelerate a substantial increase of impactful actions by stakeholders across food systems, aligned for collective impact on healthy diets from sustainable food systems.


Decrease in the number of people who cannot afford a healthy diet – down from 3 billion in 2019 and contribute to ongoing efforts aimed at building consensus on other relevant indicators for assessing sustainable healthy diets.


A world where all people eat healthy diets from sustainable food systems. That is: healthy diets are available, affordable, accessible, and appealing to all.

Realization of this vision would achieve a multitude of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), such as ending hunger and malnutrition in all its forms, promoting healthy lives and wellbeing for all by substantially reducing the health burden of non-communicable diseases and improving maternal and child health, reducing inequalities, promoting responsible consumption and production, and foster urgent action to combat climate change.

HDSFS structure and membership

Members − governments, civil society organizations (CSO), UN agencies and academic entities − offer expertise and capacity as part of the effort to accelerate more impactful action at the country level and support special projects.   
The Coalition’s steering committee and secretariat is positioned at the global level and connects with countries, using the existing mechanisms of its members, such as country offices. There is no plan to set up organizational structures of the Coalition at country level in the foreseeable future.

  • Secretariat: FAO, UN-Nutrition Secretariat and WHO
  • Steering committee: Ecuador, Ghana, Switzerland and Yemen (2-years mandate, on a rotational basis among permanent country members); CARE International, City University of London, Club of Rome, Consumers International, EAT, FAO, GAIN, International Livestock Research Institute/CGIAR, UNEP, UNICEF, UN-Nutrition Secretariat, WFP, WHO, WWF (permanent members).
  • Member countries: Brazil, Chile, Denmark, Ecuador, Ethiopia, the European Commission, Finland, Ghana, the Netherlands, Niger, Nigeria, Norway, Sierra Leone, Slovenia, Sudan, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Arab Emirates, Yemen and Zambia.
    More member countries are always welcome to join!
  • Non-state actors: CARE International, City University of London, Club of Rome, Consumers International, EAT, ENN, GAFF, GAIN, International Livestock Research Institute/CGIAR, University of Ghana and WWF
  • UN Members: FAO, UNEP, UNICEF, UN-Nutrition Secretariat, WFP and WHO

Sustainable food systems call a wide range of actors from private sector to civil society to work together to achieve healthy diets for all. For this reason, Principles of engagement were developed to enable non-state actors to engage with the aim of advancing the Coalition’s work plan with special consideration to ending malnutrition in all its form, using human right based approaches, and identifying any potential conflict of interest. The secretariat of the coalition has also developed an application tool and a declaration of commitment to be submitted by entities interested in joining the coalition.

To join or express your interest in the Coalition contact:

What does the HDSFS do?

The food supply:

Actions that increase the supply of foods needed to support healthy diets from sustainable food systems.

Food environments:

Actions to support healthy diets from sustainable food systems through enhancing the institutional, physical, price, informational, educational and policy environments where people procure their food.

Valuing food:

Actions to motivate, empower and enable everyone, everywhere to have the agency to acquire, prepare and eat healthy diets produced, using environmentally sustainable practices.

Furthermore, the HDSFS aims to achieve its purpose by conducting three interrelated functions, which respond to countries requests and priorities.

  1. Addressing priorities and challenges at the country level through aligning action across food systems for collective impact
  2. Facilitate peer-to-peer learning between countries
  3. Manage special projects on integrating nutrition, health and sustainability through food, determined by country priorities. Currently, the HDSFS is working on the following projects: Healthy and sustainable diets in Nationally Determined Contributions; Sustainability and dietary guidelines; Healthy diets in fragile contexts.


To learn more, read the HDSFS work plan.


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