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Rome Reports

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Pope Francis will attend UN conference on nutrition in November

Early on after his election, Pope Francis lashed out at food waste, linking it to his now famous concept of a "throwaway culture.â? POPE FRANCIS "We must remember that when we waste or throw away food, it's as if we're stealing it from the table of the poor. From those who are hungry!â? Sustainability is a message the Pope has repeated often in his 15-month pontificate. "People occasionally forgive, but nature never does. If we don't take care of the environment, there's no way of getting around it.â? He will take that message to world leaders at the U.N.-sponsored Second International Conference on Nutrition, from November 19-21 in Rome. JOSE GRAZIANO DA SILVA Director-General, FAO "I believe that his presence not only stimulates us to do more, but in some sense, it's a kind of partnership that we are engaging.â? JOMO KWAME SUNDARAN Food and Agriculture Organization  "The Pope has exercised tremendous moral leadership, not only for Roman Catholics but for others in the world. And this is why... the importance of moral leadership in the struggle against hunger and malnutrition, is important.â? The Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that 842 million people are malnourished. At the same time, some 500 million adults are obese.  The three-day event will focus on ways to improve nutrition and sustainable access to food, for a growing global population.  JOMO KWAME SUNDARAN Food and Agriculture Organization  "We hope the conference will spur greater attention to these challenges and it is also very important that we acknowledge the role of political leadership in making the difference.â?  The first nutrition conference took place in 1992. Organizers said progress since then has been "uneven.â? The conference's end goal is a political declaration, and a framework to implement  programs at a national and international level.  RCA AA/FAO JM -PR Up: YJA