Food Systems Summit action guide 5: Gender equity
Women everywhere play a vital role in every aspect of growing, harvesting, processing, and marketing what we eat. They produce over half of the world’s food. But compared to men, they are often held back from their ambitions by tenure, customs, or laws that perpetuate unequal access to productive resources, credit, and extension services. Such widespread gender gaps have profound implications for household income, food and nutrition security, and childhood development. Low female involvement in decisionmaking often makes women farmers and their children vulnerable to hunger and malnutrition, especially when crisis strikes. Gender-responsive approaches target existing disparities and strive to overcome or remove them. They highlight women’s contributions to agriculture and their critical role as agents of change. The empowerment of rural women can foster innovation and provide wide-reaching and longterm benefits, from household to global scales.