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Nutrition has come a long way since the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) came into being in 2000 following the adoption of the United Nations Millennium Declaration. It was a slow process, but nutrition has come to be recognized by the World Bank as being core to development, and we have seen its critical role underscored by the prestigious medical journal The Lancet and the respected Copenhagen Consensus. Nobel laureates, economists, high-profile politicians and even His Holiness the Pope have spoken up for nutrition. And now we have the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) Movement, launched by US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Irish Foreign Minister Micheál Martin, that has really generated attention, commitments and actions. So there was some sense of sadness as we said goodbye to the opportunity the MDGs gave nutrition – a sadness compounded by the harsh reality that the world did not achieve the goals that were set and that, despite some progress being made, there is much work left unfinished.

Hello to the Sustainable Development Goals

Thus the “hello” to the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and all that they mean for nutrition in the post-2015 era is also poignant. In the true meaning of the word, this injunction requires that we come to a stop or cease what we have been doing. It requires us to look back at what we have achieved and to be open about where, how and why we have failed. And then to move forward with innovations that attract new and revitalized attention and action for nutrition.

This issue of the magazine is filled with interesting reading that looks both backward (goodbye) and forward (hello):