Despite its dismal record, the Gates Foundation-sponsored Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) announced a new five-year strategy in September after rebranding itself by dropping ‘Green Revolution’ from its name.
A war of words between Russia on the one hand, and the US, Britain, France and Germany on the other—specifically on the deployment of drones in Ukraine -- has triggered an unintended consequence: a new world food crisis.
The Western powers last week asked the UN to verify whether Iranian drones were being used “illegally” in violation of the 2015 Security Council resolution 2231 which endorsed the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) on Iran’s disputed nuclear programme.
At Jhargram, a far-flung village in India’s West Bengal state, a group of farmers sit together in one of the open fields. They debate, deliberate, and confabulate about the marketing strategy they should use when selling their harvest on the open market.
In 2022, an ongoing pandemic, global conflicts, climate change, rising prices and international tensions…
…are affecting global food security.
A group of middle school students living in Asia filmed this video on their campaign to reduce food waste. They learned many lessons: Only take as much food as you can eat; don’t waste, eat ugly fruit and compost. In this production, they spoke to experts about how to ensure that everybody has something nutritious to eat.
The 2022 Africa Green Revolution Forum (AGRF) Summit ended in Kigali, Rwanda, with policymakers, activists, researchers, business leaders, and agricultural experts divided over the right pace to build resilient agri-food systems on the continent.
Edward Mukiibi was forced to do agriculture at school as punishment for misbehaviour.
Instead of hating the punishment, he loved it, especially when he realised farming was the future of good food, health and wealth.
The swish of calm waters followed by unexpectedly high tides and violent waves is now too familiar for the fisher community along Kenya’s 1,420-kilometer Indian Ocean coastline.
A growing mountain of data and analysis points to an unprecedented global crisis in the making, due to the convergence of “Four Cs” (Conflict, Covid, Climate and Costs).
From the worst drought
in four decades threatening famine across the Horn of Africa to extreme heat in South Asia, the war in Ukraine and the unequal pace of pandemic recovery, global food systems are under extraordinary pressure.
It wasn’t that long ago that Internet connectivity faded the moment one left a populated area like a city or big town – “no service” was the take-away message back then. But thanks to 3G, 4G and now 5G mobile technology, coupled with widespread installation of cellular towers in rural areas region-wide, that little message shows up much less frequently.
When I first met Dr. Roland Bunch, I have to be honest—he scared me. As one of the most well-respected leaders on agronomy and resilient land management, he offers extremely prescient predictions on how famines take root when soils fail—and also has an admirably clear-eyed view of what we need to do better.
You probably use wild species far more often than you realise. For many people, especially in more developed economies, the use of wild species sounds like something quite removed from their everyday lives – something perhaps more relevant to other people, in other countries.
Johnny, living in the United States (US), goes to his school and gets free breakfast and lunch there. There may not be enough food for dinner at home. But he knows that he can get fed at school. Sadly, however, after the pandemic, schools were closed, which meant no breakfast and no lunch for him.
This is what happens when you starve. With no food, the body’s metabolism slows down to preserve energy for vital organs. Hungry and weak, people often become fatigued, irritable and confused.
The immune system loses strength. As they starve, people—especially children—are likelier to fall sick or die from diseases they may have otherwise resisted. Cholera, respiratory infections, malaria, dengue, and diphtheria kill more people in famines than starvation itself.
India is being asked by the US government
and the IMF
to reconsider its decision to suspend wheat exports. Their cited concern is that export restrictions will exacerbate food shortages amidst Russia's invasion of Ukraine. But the argument does not stand ground technically or morally.
The COVID pandemic has had a profoundly negative impact on Africa’s sovereign debt situation. Currently, 22 countries are either in debt distress or at high risk of debt distress.
Growing up in Samoya Village of Bungoma County in the Western part of Kenya, Elvis Wanjala has fond childhood memories of the rainy season, chasing and catching black-bellied winged termites in the rain.
Amidst a backdrop of rising food insecurity worldwide and a global food supply chain crisis, many countries are attempting to increase the level of food self-production. One improved input for farming which is receiving renewed attention is improved seed. The two most populous countries in the world, China and India, have recently made ground-breaking moves to improve their competitive position by developing new seeds which will improve their food production and increase resilience to climate change. So far, in 2022, new regulations on using biotechnology (genetic modification and gene editing
) have been put in place by both countries to ultimately allow smallholder farmers to benefit from these new seeds.
Food systems are under severe stress around the world now. The thresholds of tolerance are already exceeding limits with millions facing acute food and water scarcity throughout all continents. Over a quarter of Africa’s population are facing hunger and food insecurity. Conflict, droughts, flooding, rising unemployment, inequality, economic crises, and the impacts of Covid-19 pandemic have been ravaging the Continent on an unprecedented scale.
India began its journey as an independent nation in 1947 with fresh memory of the Bengal Famine of 1943 which claimed 1.5 to 3 million lives. Against this backdrop, the First Five Year Plan (1951-56) prioritized agriculture which, however, shifted to heavily industrialization in the second Plan.