Food and Agriculture

“I’m More Optimistic than Before Regarding the Goal of Ending Hunger in Latin America”

"I'm more optimistic than before" about the goal of ending hunger included in the 2030 agenda for Latin America and the Caribbean, said FAO regional representative Mario Lubetkin in an interview with IPS.

Why Farmers in India and Pakistan Are Shifting to Natural or Regenerative Farming

Nine years ago, farmer Sultan Ahmed Bhatti gave up tilling the soil and using most fertilizers and pesticides on his farm in Doober Bhattian, Pakistan. His brothers at first derided him. But soon, his first experiment with growing wheat on raised beds was a runaway success. “We produced more wheat than what we grew on ploughed, flat land,” he said.

Revival of Hope: How a Remote Indian Village Overcame Water Scarcity

The people of Patqapara Village, a hamlet in India's West Bengal State, were until recently reeling under absolute distress due to water scarcity. The lack of irrigation facilities in this far-flung and inaccessible hamlet had resulted in a steady decline in agricultural activities. With a population of around 7,000, as per government estimates, the village primarily depends on agriculture for its livelihood. However, in recent years, drastic changes in weather patterns, including unseasonal rainfall, delayed monsoons, and soaring temperatures above normal levels, led to the drying up of irrigation canals and wells in the village. This left the local population in chaos, as their cultivable fields were bereft of any irrigation facilities.

Child Malnutrition in Peru Driven Up by Poverty and Food Insecurity

Quechua farmer Felipa Noamesa, who lives in the southern Peruvian department of Cuzco, prepares a cream of fava bean soup for breakfast every morning with bread and vegetable soup with noodles. Her children are grown up, so her priority is that her five-year-old granddaughter does not suffer from anemia or malnutrition, two problems she frequently sees in her community.

Governments Worldwide Prioritize School Feeding for Its Multiple Benefits

Before COVID-19 hit, in January 2020, 388 million children worldwide were being fed every day at school. Soon after lockdowns began, that number plummeted to 18 million, but just two years later, in 2022, it had recovered, and more — school feeding had reached 420 million children.

Conservation Efforts by Ethnic Communities in Bangladesh Bolster Water Security

Just a few years ago, Sudarshana Chakma (35), a resident of the remote Digholchari Debarmatha village under Bilaichari upazila in the Rangamati Hill District, had to traverse a long hilly path to fetch water for her household because there were no local water sources. "Unchecked deforestation and degradation of village common forests (VCFs) led to the drying up of all-natural water sources in our village. We struggled to collect drinking and household water," Chakma explained to IPS. 

Fall-out from Ecuador’s Crises Highlights Need to Invest in Grassroots Resilience

Shocking and ongoing levels of violence in Ecuador since the New Year followed by flooding caused by El Niño landed a double blow for those in the country who live day to day and are most vulnerable to instability.

Beekeeping Offers Opportunity to Zimbabwean Farming Communities

Honeybees quickly react with a sharp and loud buzz sound as beekeeper Tanyaradzwa Kanangira opens one of the wooden horizontal Kenyan top bar hives near a stream in a thick forest in Chimanimani, 412 kilometres from Zimbabwe’s capital, Harare. The 26-year-old puffs some smoke, a safety measure, as he holds and inspects a honeycomb built from hexagons by the honey bees.

The Ups and Downs of Control of Transgenic Crops in Mexico

Mexico has taken important steps to protect native corn, even standing up to its largest trading partner, the United States, to do so. But the lack of a comprehensive legal framework in its policy towards genetically modified crops allows authorizations for other transgenic crops.

Brazil’s Biofuel Potential Set to Expand Thanks to Sustainable Aviation Fuel

Brazil is counting on biofuels to assert itself as an energy powerhouse in the near future, as a decisive supplier of low-carbon jet fuel, a requirement of the climate crisis. The electrification of automobiles has tended to curb the strong ethanol and biodiesel agribusiness developed in the country since the 1970s. But demand for sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) now offers the possibility of significant new expansion for many decades to come.

LPG, a Useful “Transitional” Fuel for the UN’s Clean Cooking Effort

One of the key efforts under the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals is to provide poor households with access to clean cooking technologies to replace, in particular, the burning of solid biomass (e.g., fuelwood and charcoal) in traditional open stoves that kills millions of women and children.

International Women’s Day, 2024
Inside Women Dominated Seaweed Farms in Kenya’s Indian Ocean Waters

Nearly two kilometers into the Indian Ocean from the Mwazaro beach coastline in Lunga Lunga Sub-County, Kwale County, women can be spotted seated in the shallow ocean waters or tying strings to erected poles parallel to the waves. It is a captivating sight to see rows of seaweed farms in the Indian Ocean.

A Regional Commitment Is Underway For Food Security and a Sustainable Future

The regional commitment to fight hunger and malnutrition in Latin America and the Caribbean has made significant progress thanks to the update of the Food Security, Nutrition and Hunger Eradication Plan of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) for the period 2024-2030, known as the CELAC FNS Plan.

From Gas to Ash: The Struggle of Nigerian Women Amidst Surging Cooking Gas Prices

One sunny mid-morning in Omu-Aran village, a community in Kwara State, North Central Nigeria, Iyabo Sunday sat beside a firewood stand observing her pot of beans with rice (a combination enjoyed by many in Nigeria). The 52-year-old widow used her plastic dirt parker to fan the flames, occasionally blowing air through her mouth for speed and frantically shielding her face from the wisps of smoke that curled from the firewood.

Salvadoran Poultry Farms Produce Biogas, Easing Socio-environmental Conflicts

In a win-win relationship, a segment of El Salvador's agribusiness industry is taking steps to ease the tension of the historic socio-environmental conflict caused by poultry and pig farms, whose waste has caused concern and anger in nearby communities.

‘I Haven’t Forgotten Where I Came From,’ says Yvonne Pinto, Incoming IRRI Chief

Growing up on a small farming station in Holetta (Ethiopia), Yvonne Pinto would accompany her agriculturist father to the farm, where she would spend her time cross-fertilizing plants. Her tiny fingers making the task easier, as she would marvel at the end product of a prospective new and higher yielding variety. These formative years laid the foundation for her career in agricultural science.

Coastal Indigenous and Minority Women Driving Kenya’s Blue Forest Conservation Efforts

Tsunza Peninsula is a natural wonder that sits just inside the many inlets of Mombasa Island on the border between Mombasa and Kwale Counties—a little-known spectacle of lagoons, islands, and thick mangroves in Kinango Sub-County, Kwale County, on Kenya’s coastal region. 

Inside Kenya’s Seed Control Battle: Why Smallholder Farmers Want to Share Indigenous Seeds

A group of 15 smallholder farmers in Kenya petitioned the country’s High Court, seeking to compel the government to review sections of a law that bans the sharing and exchange of uncertified and unregistered seeds.

Cambodia’s Declining Fish Catch: Can the Tide Be Reversed?

Living in a floating village means embracing the rhythm of the ever-changing water. As I stroll through Kampong Khleang, flanked by wooden stilt houses lining sandy streets, I witness daily life unfolding.  Alongside staircases, people prepare meals or run their little shops.

Snowless Winter and a Climate Crisis: Kashmir’s ‘Unprecedented’ Weather

Abdul Gani Malik, a 75-year-old goldsmith living in Kashmir’s capital, Srinagar, has witnessed eras of tranquility and turbulence in the Himalayan region. What he has not seen, however, is a snowless Kashmir during the winter.

Smallholder Farmers Are Key to CGIAR Response to Hunger Crisis

Dr Ismahane Elouafi has her work cut out. As the new executive managing director of CGIAR, a global network of agricultural research centers, her mandate, simply put, is to tackle the world’s most severe hunger crisis in modern history. And it is in Africa that the former Chief Scientist of FAO with a PhD in durum wheat genetics faces her greatest challenges, both in terms of developing science-based innovations and technologies and lobbying governments to adopt responsible policies.

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