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Home » International law and policies » Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, General Comment No. 12 on the Right to Food

Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, General Comment No. 12 on the Right to Food

In 1999, the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights issued a General Comment on the Right to Food. According to General Comment No. 12 the right to food implies three types of obligations – the obligations to respect, to protect and to fulfill:

-The obligation to respect existing access to adequate food requires States parties not to take any measures that result in preventing such access.
-The obligation to protect requires measures by the State to ensure that enterprises or individuals do not deprive individuals of their access to adequate food.
-The obligation to fulfill (facilitate) means the State must pro-actively engage in activities intended to strengthen people’s access to and utilization of resources and means to ensure their livelihood, including food security. Finally, whenever an individual or group is unable, for reasons beyond their control, to enjoy the right to adequate food by the means at their disposal, States have the obligation to fulfill (provide) that right directly. This obligation also applies for persons who are victims of natural or other disasters.

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