Food & Agriculture

The Importance of the Upcoming FAO Election

With each passing day, the world gets just a little smaller as the internet and cell phones bring our communities together, reveal our shared challenges, and lay bare our failures. As global citizens, we are all concerned about the growing number of hungry people around the world and the threats to food security. The simple fact is that more than 800 million people go hungry every day, and if that number shocks you, know that experts predict the number to grow significantly over the next ten years.

South Africa’s First Carbon Farm

Land restoration could attract large private investments in the fight against climate change over the coming decades, if Governments and the United Nations put the right incentives and conditions in place.

Zimbabwe’s Resettled Farmers Hawking Cigarettes to Survive

For subsistence farmer Rogers Hove—who proudly brandishes a worn out letter for his five hectare piece of land he obtained from government following the chaotic land seizures from white commercial farmers over two decades ago—what matters most to him, “is to see my piece of land in my possession”.

Report Reveals Mounting Pressure on Zambia’s Environmental Resources

There is a strong link between provision of basic social services and the use of natural resources in a country. Thus, with increased population comes additional pressure on natural resources. This is a key finding in the latest Zambia Environment Outlook (ZEO) Report 4, published by the Zambia Environmental Management Agency (ZEMA).

Long Life to Their Majesties, the Bees!

Amazingly organised social communities, bees ensure food chain. ‘Bee’ grateful to them… at least on their World Day!

Global Hunger Is Threatening Families Because of Climate Change

There is barely a corner of human life that will not be affected by climate change, and some of its impacts are already being felt. Consider this, 821 million people are now hungry and over 150 million children stunted, putting the hunger eradication goal, SDG 2, at risk. Today 15 May, is the United Nations International Day of Families and the theme for this year is, ‘Families and Climate Action’.

Benin’s Agriculture Has a Good Season, But it Wasn’t Easy

Théophile Houssou, a maize farmer from Cotonou, has spent sleepless nights lying awake worrying about the various disasters that could befall any farmer, often wondering, “What if it rains heavily and all my crops are washed away?” or “What if the armyworms invade my farm and eat up all the crops and I’m left with nothing?”

Improving the Lives of Millions of Mothers and Children

It is slightly after 3pm on a hot Wednesday afternoon in Chipata district, eastern Zambia, and a group of women are gathering for a meeting. It is Elizabeth Tembo’s turn to stand amongst the other mothers like herself and share key lessons on nutrition.

Egypt’s Food Challenge: a Good Effort but Not Enough

“Unfortunately the overall nutritional panorama of Egypt does not look well,” says Dr. Sara Diana Garduno Diaz, an expert concentrating on nutrition and biology at the American University of the Middle East. Diaz’s research focuses on dietary patterns and ethnic-associated risk factors for metabolic syndrome.

CORRECTED VERSION: World Bank Dispossessing Rural Poor

The World Bank’s Enabling the Business of Agriculture (EBA) project, launched in 2013, has sought agricultural reforms favouring the corporate sector. EBA was initially established to support the New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition, initiated by the G8 to promote private agricultural development in Africa.

Climbing the Coconut Value Chain in the Pacific

In the Pacific, coconut is king. Known as the ‘tree of life’, locals make use of every part of the tree to survive – the fruit for eating, husks for fuelling fires, fronds for making multiuse baskets, and the trunk for building houses.

Lessons From China: Fostering Agricultural Growth and Poverty Reduction

As China has moved from a poor isolated country to a major player in the world economic and political sphere, developing countries need to learn how to engage.  

U.S. Needs to Shift to More Sustainable Agriculture—As Do All Countries

Water supply has long been a key issue in California. Today it is no less critical, especially given the years of drought that California is experiencing, lending additional impetus to assessing the impact of agriculture on water.

Migrant Farm Workers, the Main Victims of Slave Labour in Mexico

"They mislead the workers, tell them that they will be paid well and pay them much less. The recruiters and the employers deceive them," complained Marilyn Gómez, a migrant farm worker in Mexico.

Finding a Way to Food Sustainability

There’s much to think about regarding food this month. April is Reducing Food Waste Month in the United States, as efforts mount here to reduce food loss and waste, while globally Sunday Apr. 7 was World Heath Day.

Safeguarding The Health of People and Planet Through Food

Food sustainability, both in production and consumption, is at the heart of a healthy public and planet. On World Health Day, it is increasingly clear that a radical transformation of the global food system is sorely needed.

Monoculture Crops Threaten Community Water Projects in El Salvador

For nearly three decades, several communities in southeastern El Salvador have collectively and efficiently managed the water they consume, but monoculture production and climate change put their water at risk.

It’s Simple, but Requires Determination

I am drafting this on International Women’s Day - March 8 - with an eye towards World Water Day on March 22. On International Women’s Day we celebrate progress in gender equality. At the same time, we recognize how much remains to be done: how many women remain excluded from decision-making across many professions. Changing this is urgent. Water – clean and accessible – is getting scarcer at an alarming rate. While working to change this, we cannot afford to exclude women.

Becoming Drought Resilient: Why African Farmers Must Consider Drought Tolerant Crops

The latest UN Food and Agriculture Organization’s annual Africa Regional Overview of Food Security and Nutrition Report highlighted drought as one of the key factors contributing to the continuing rise in the number of hungry people in sub-Saharan Africa. And in South Africa, the Government’s Crop Estimates Committee announced that the country would harvest 20 percent less maize in 2019 because of drought conditions. 

Helping St. Vincent’s Fishers Maintain an Essential Industry in a Changing Climate

From an influx of sargassum in near-shore waters, to fish venturing further out to sea to find cooler, more oxygenated water, fishers in St. Vincent and the Grenadines are battling the vagaries of climate change. The country is doing what it can to respond.

Using Climate-Smart Solutions to Promote Peace in South Sudan

Almost a month to go ahead of the traditional rainy season in Gbudue State, 430 kilometres west of South Sudan’s capital, Juba, smallholder farmers are already tilling their land as they prepare to plant purer, drought-tolerant seeds.

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