ETHICAL ISSUES IN FOOD AND AGRICULTURE17breakup of traditional family units, accelerated urbanization and the globalizationof markets, information and culture. In the face of persistent and widespreadhunger, therefore, the 1996 Rome Declaration on World Food Security and the WorldFood Summit Plan of Action reaffirmed the right of everyone to have access to safeand nutritious food and specified the need to clarify the definition of the right tofood. They also reaffirmed the fundamental right of everyone to be free fromhunger, as stated in the International Covenant on Economic, Social and CulturalRights and other relevant international and regional instruments, urging particularattention to the implementation and full and progressive realization of these rightsas a means of achieving food security for all.While the globalization of the world°s economy is proceeding rapidly, the creationof a global society is only now beginning to be considered. Goods, services andespecially capital flow freely across national borders at ever-increasing rates, yetpeople remain largely constrained by national borders. For nations, businesses andconsumers, action in the market is limited by access to capital; those without anymeans have no voice in the marketplace. And although every nation has institu-tions that supplement market forces with some form of social safety net to supportpeople who are unable to draw adequate benefit from the market, the solidarity net-work among nations is rather underdeveloped. Yet, a global market without a global society could be self-destructive. First, itmay divide people between those who participate in the market and those who lackthe means to do so, both within nations and among them. Whether it be for lack ofeducation and capital or because they are exploited, those who cannot participatewill reject the global market as yet another threat to their livelihoods. Second, theglobal market might involve the construction of international institutions that claimthe allegiance of only a small ±lite. Citizens in both industrialized and developingnations may therefore reject global markets, plunging the world into conflicts at thenational and international levels.In contrast, little attention has been given to the prerequistes for building a glob-al society. Such a society would embody the values put forth in dozens of interna-tional treaties and declarations that treat people as citizensrather than consumers.But how can we build a global society in which poverty, hunger and malnutritionare reduced or, better, eliminated?Clearly, to achieve this goal, many diverse interests must be reconciled and sev-eral complex and protracted conflicts resolved. Other choices are conceivable butnot attractive. There may be parties who believe they can triumph over others but,An emerging global economy, but not a global society
in the long term, there are no winners. No matter how difficult it may be, peoplemust recognize that their fate is bound to that of others, as is the fate of the planet.