Food is any substance consumed to provide nutritional support for an organism . It is usually of plant or animal origin, and contains essential nutrients, such as carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins, or minerals . The substance is ingested by an organism and assimilated by the organism 's cells to provide energy , maintain life , or stimulate growth.
Historically, humans secured food through two methods: hunting and gathering and agriculture . Today, the majority of the food energy required by the ever increasing population of the world is supplied by the food industry .
Food safety and food security are monitored by agencies like the International Association for Food Protection, World Resources Institute, World Food Programme, Food and Agriculture Organization , and International Food Information Council. They address issues such as sustainability, biological diversity, climatechange, nutritional economics, population growth, water supply, and access to food.
The right to food is a human right derived from the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR), recognizing the " right to an adequate standard of living, including adequate food", as well as the "fundamental right to be free from hunger".