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WCC general secretary reflects on “Ten Commandments of Food”

WCC general secretary reflects on “Ten Commandments of Food”

Photo: WCC

04 May 2019

World Council of Churches (WCC) general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit reflected on the “10 Commandments of Food” during a Seminar on Food and Water for Life, on 4 May, in Hong Kong.

“Food is central to life and our faith,” said Tveit. “It is a blessing and a gift of God, in the form of the abundant creation which we depend on for our sustenance.”

The event was co-hosted by the World Council of Churches, Hong Kong Christian Council, Amity Foundation, Tao Fung Shan Christian Centre.

Food is also a reflection of the quality of our relationships with each other, added Tveit. “But food, that binds us together as communities and people of faith, manifests the great contradiction that humanity faces today,” he said. “Although the world produces enough food for all, and great strides are being made in science and technology, the number of hungry people in the world is growing.”

Hunger has been on the rise over the past three years, returning to levels from a decade ago, Tveit said. “What can we do as people of faith, to overcome hunger, by addressing the root causes? I believe that it is only by getting our congregations and people of faith, to reflect on the critical questions on issues related to food, in the context of our faith, can we bring about transformations of societies and sustainable change to overcome hunger and inequity.”

In this context, the WCC developed the “Ten Commandments of Food” to address the existential challenge of hunger and inequity.

The Ten Commandments are:

1. Give thanks for the food you eat.
2. Eat food grown as close as possible to where you live.
3. Strive for all people to have knowledge about and access to affordable, nutritious food.
4. Eat mindfully and in moderation.
5. Do not waste food.
6. Be grateful to those who grow and prepare food for your table.
7. Support fair wages for farmworkers, farmers and food workers.
8. Reduce the environmental damage of land, water, and air from food production and the food
system.
9. Protect the biodiversity of seeds, soils, ecosystems and the cultures of food producers
10. Rejoice and share the sacred gift of food with all.

Read the full text of the general secretary's reflection

Learn more about the "Food for Life" campaign