Robynne Anderson's Emerging Thoughts on Ag

World Food Prize winner collaborates with SAWBO to educate African sweet potato farmers

It will be an honour to moderate a roundtable on nutrition during the World Food Prize. So, it couldn’t be more fitting to see a client collaborate with a past winner.

In arid regions in Africa, smallholder sweet potato farmers often struggle to store planting material for the next season. In response to this challenge, researchers of the International Potato Centre (CIP) developed the Triple S technique. Adopting this technique helped farmers have vines available to plant in the rainy season and led to increased yields. In order to propagate this information, Scientific Animation Without Borders partnered with CIP Principal Scientist and 2016 World Food Prize winner Dr Jan Low to animate this technique. Read More

Resilient Trade Ecosystems for Improved Food Systems

On July 6, the World Trade Organization Secretariat in collaboration with the United Nations Food Systems Summit organised a Global Summit Dialogue on Trade. During this event, WTO Director-General Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala highlighted the vital role trade plays in food security.

In light of this, on July 26th at the United Nations Pre-Summit, the Government of Brazil and The International Agri-Food Network organised an Affiliated Session with the support of private sector members such as the International Chamber of Commerce and the International Grain Trade Coalition. Read More

Shaping the Path to Resilient Food Systems in Africa

From September 6 – 10, actors in the agricultural sector will gather to dialogue on how to change the status quo for Africa at the African Green Revolution Forum (AGRF) 2021 Summit. All around the world, global leaders, researchers, heads of state, and several other stakeholders have noted with great concern the importance of food systems. This year also marks a period of recovery for the world after extensive lockdowns, high numbers in COVID-related deaths, and economic regression. In reflection of these key pathways, the African Green Revolution Forum (AGRF) has selected the theme “Pathways to recovery and resilient food systems”. Just like previous years, sessions and dialogues will be based on ten thematic areas including agri-investment & SME finance, youth employment in agriculture, and ag-tech & digitalization. Read More

Leveraging the Power of Food Systems

In October 2019, the UN Secretary-General António Guterres announced formally the holding of a Food Systems Summit (FSS) and a Pre-Summit by the United Nations. It was prescient as hunger continues to rise and global food stocks have been suffering from uneven supplies. Heading toward the Summit and beyond, there is much reason to be concerned that food prices will continue to rise and poverty is becoming more entrenched. These will exacerbate global inequities and insecurities. All countries are feeling the effects in some way, and the most vulnerable that the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set out to protect are more at risk. Read More

A Worrying Outlook for the Worst Food Crises In 2021

The development community needs to step up efforts to feed and nourish the more than 690 million people who are hungry today – and the additional 2 billion people the world will have by 2050.  The UN Food Systems Summit 2021 and the High Level Political Platform on Sustainable Development provide an opportunity to emphasize the role that resilient agri-food systems play in contributing to sustainable solutions to food crises. This calls for strong innovative, transdisciplinary partnerships that can deliver game changing solutions to feed and nourish the world.

The recently released Global Report on Food Crises 2021 sounds alarm bells and points to an increase in the number of people facing acute food insecurity and requiring urgent food, nutrition and livelihoods assistance. According to the report, the magnitude and severity of food crises worsened in 2020 as protracted conflict, the economic fallout of COVID-19 and weather extremes intensified pre-existing weaknesses.

At least 155 million people were acutely food insecure and in need of urgent assistance or equivalent in 2020 in 55 countries/territories that asked for external assistance – the highest level in five years of the report. This represents an increase of nearly 20 million people since 2019 when almost 135 million people were in crisis. Most people in these dire circumstances were in Afghanistan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the Sudan and Yemen – with at least 2 million people in Emergency (IPC Phase 4) in each country.

The findings of the fifth edition of the Global Report on Food Crisis make a grim reading, according to the United Nations Secretary-General, António Guterres.

With the COVID-19 pandemic still not under control, many households will face reduced incomes associated with limited labour wage opportunities and delays in paymentof government employee salaries. If there is no improvement, the economic consequences may become more severe as the year progresses.

Now is the moment for interventions that will help those truly most left behind.

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