The World Food Prize Foundation

United Nations Secretary-General to Attend World Food Prize Ceremony


Des Moines, Iowa, USA (September 27, 2012) – The Secretary-General of the United Nations, H.E. Ban Ki-moon, will address the World Food Prize Laureate Award Ceremony at the Iowa State Capitol on the evening of October 18, 2012.

“Given the exceptional leadership that the United Nations has played and continues to play in confronting global hunger, we are extremely honored that Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has accepted our invitation to travel to Des Moines to participate in the World Food Prize,” stated Ambassador Kenneth M. Quinn, President of the World Food Prize Foundation. 

The Ambassador noted that “it is especially meaningful for the Secretary-General to participate at this ceremony since the 2012 World Food Prize Laureate – Dr. Daniel Hillel – is an individual who has endeavored to build peace and understanding throughout the Middle East by sharing the micro-irrigation technology which he helped develop in Israel.”

Ambassador Quinn observed that “the World Food Prize founder, the late Nobel Peace Prize laureate Dr. Norman E. Borlaug, was the recipient of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Agricola Award as one of the greatest hunger fighters of all times.” He added that “this will add further significance to the Secretary General’s historic visit, as will the fact that it will occur during the week of October 16, which is UN World Food Day around the globe, and Dr. Norman E. Borlaug World Food Prize Day in Iowa.”

In addition to the Secretary-General, two other high-ranking United Nations representatives will also participate in the Laureate Award Ceremony: Her Royal Highness Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein, a UN Messenger of Peace; and Ambassador Ertharin Cousin, the Executive Director of the UN World Food Programme.

Over 1,500 participants from more than 70 countries are expected to take part in the week-long World Food Prize series of events between October 16 and October 20, including: the Laureate Award Ceremony, the Borlaug Dialogue international symposium, the Iowa Hunger Summit, and the World Food Prize Global Youth Institute.

ABOUT THE WORLD FOOD PRIZE:  The World Food Prize was founded in 1986 by Dr. Norman E. Borlaug, recipient of the 1970 Nobel Peace Prize. Since then, the World Food Prize has honored outstanding individuals who have made vital contributions to improving the quality, quantity or availability of food throughout the world. Laureates have been recognized from Bangladesh, Brazil, China, Denmark, Ethiopia, Ghana, India, Mexico, Sierra Leone, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, the United Nations and the United States. More at

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