Published: 24/03/2020

Former UN Special Rapporteur on the right to food Olivier De Schutter, has been appointed the Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, effective May 1. De Schutter produced a number of outstanding reports while serving in his previous position from 2008-2014. Among them are his report on Agribusiness and the Right to Food which emphasizes the central importance of freedom of association and collective bargaining in enabling waged workers in agriculture to access their right to food.

He takes over from Professor Philip Alston who served in his post from 2008. Alston produced a series of excellent reports including an outstanding 2018 report to the United Nations’ General Assembly on privatization and human rights which concluded: The consequences for human rights are overwhelmingly negative.

De Schutter worked collaboratively with the IUF and spoke at meetings of our governing bodies. We congratulate him on this new appointment.

The newly appointed UN Special Rapporteur on the right to food is Professor Michael Fakhri, whom the IUF will be contacting to express our concerns at the situation of food workers, and agricultural workers in particular, in the COVID-19 crisis.