The scope of this article is to describe the main components of the food systems of Brazil, Colombia and Panama. It involved a narrative review of the literature from 2000 to 2022, based on the concept of food systems proposed by the Committee on World Food Security. A system of agro-industrial production, monoculture, use of pesticides and exploitation of natural resources predominates in all three countries, and the area occupied by family farmers is reduced. Multinational supermarket chains dominate food distribution, essentially in large urban centers, despite the increasing search for alternative models. Advances have been made in food labeling regulation (Colombia and Brazil) and in the taxation of sugar-sweetened beverages (Panama). The predominant food systems in these countries generate a significant and negative environmental impact, favor the consumption of ultra-processed foods, high prevalence of obesity and chronic non-transmissible diseases and increase in hunger, violating the human right to adequate food.