In support of the United Nations International Year of Millets 2023
Millets, millets millets!
Suddenly, this word pointing to a tiny grain seems to be everywhere!
So why the sudden zest for millet?
2023, as declared by the United Nations, is a year to focus on celebrating and championing millet. Spearheaded by the government of India and supported by 72 countries, #IYM2023 (International Year of Millets 2023) is an opportunity to raise awareness of the nutritional and health benefits of millet, as well as their suitability for sustainable production and harvesting under adverse and changing climatic conditions, being an incredible drought-hardy and an adaptable grain.
Learn more about Millet’s mighty magnificence here!
Chefs have the power to influence and drive positive change right across our food systems, and help achieve good food for all. In 2021, the United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres called on all citizens to take action, so as to “radically change the way we produce, process, transport, market and consume food”. Chefs are powerful advocates for bridging the gap between our food systems and the food we eat.
How you can be a part of good change
- Where possible, buy your millet directly from smallholder farmers – particularly women and youth – to support rural livelihoods and sustainable agriculture in the face of a changing climate. Go one step further and partner with millet farmers and commit to buying future millet harvests to de-risk farmers’ investments.
- Substitute rice or other grains for millet to diversify diets and boost biodiversity on the farm and on our plates.
- Get creative and try different millet varieties to help diversify food systems, strengthen supply chains, and support global trade.
- Millets are a critical ingredient in the food cultures of Indigenous Peoples, who have grown and eaten these crops for thousands of years. Learn more about their food traditions and the role that millet has contributed in resilience in diets and production.
- Talk to your families and communities about the power of millet to help ensure healthy people and planet. As a nutrient-dense and climate-smart crop, millet is one step towards achieving healthy diets and transforming food systems.
- Demonstrate the ease of including millet across your menus – whether that’s in restaurants, in hospitals, or in schools.
- Learn more about the benefits of millet through the research of CGIAR’s Research Program on Grain, Legumes and Dryland Cereals – start with this article Millets prove tasty solution to climate and food security challenges.