Platform for African – European Partnership in Agricultural Research for Development

Monday, January 21, 2019

PAEPARD 2018 in figures

Number of PAEPARD Dgroups members in 2018: 10,800

From January 2018 (8,765) to December 2018 (10,800) an increase with 2,035 members.

  • Members with a cgiar extension in their emails: 275
  • Members with an extension in their emails: 87
  • Members with a extension in their emails: 81
  • Members with an extension in their emails: 58 
  • Members with an extension in their emails: 20 
  • Members with an extension in their emails: 20
PAEPARD consortium
CIRAD 45, CTA 23, RUFORUM 18, FANRPAN 14, ROPPA 11, NRI 5, EAFF 13, SACAU 10, ColeACP 9, CSA 5, PROPAC 6, ICRA  7, Agrinatura 4, FARA 9

Number of postings on the PAEPARD blog in 2018: 424

PAEPARD has been documenting a large amount of ARD initiatives and reports (Agricultural Research for Development) since 2010 with the view of reinforcing their visibility and create synergies.

This is performed on a chronological base through the PAEPARD blog:
  • 2018 (424 blog posts)
  • 2017 (495 blog posts)
  • 2016 (356 blog posts)
  • 2015 (400 blog posts),
  • 2014 (400 blog posts),
  • 2013 (257 blog posts),
  • 2012 (344 blog posts),
  • 2011 (249 blog posts),
  • 2010 (186 blog posts)

Number of views of the PAEPARD blog: 309,046

Total number of page views in 2018: 309,046

  • average 25,754 per month
  • average of 846 page views per day

Number of views Funding opportunities

Number of views Upcoming events

Friday, January 18, 2019

Food systems of Indigenous Peoples

Food systems of Indigenous Peoples who retain connection to long-evolved cultures and patterns of living in local ecosystems present a treasure of knowledge that contributes to well-being and health, and can benefit all humankind. 

This book seeks to define and describe the diversity in food system use, nutrition and health in 12 rural case studies of Indigenous Peoples in different parts of the world as a window to global Indigenous Peoples’ circumstances. 

A procedure for documenting Indigenous Peoples’ food systems was developed by researchers working with the Centre for Indigenous Peoples’ Nutrition and Environment (CINE) at McGill University, Canada, and the FAO. 

The procedure was adapted and applied in case studies located in Canada, Japan, Peru, India, Nigeria, Colombia, Thailand, Kenya, and the Federated States of Micronesia. The collective intent of this documentation is to show the inherent strengths of the local traditional food systems, how people think about and use these foods, the influx of industrial and purchased food, and the circumstances of the nutrition transition in indigenous communities. 

This research was completed with both qualitative and quantitative methods by Indigenous Peoples and their academic partners in the context of the second International Decade of the World’s Indigenous Peoples, and the Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples adopted in 2007 by the General Assembly of the United Nations.

Saturday, January 12, 2019


Guy Faure (coordination éditoriale), Yuna Chiffoleau (coordination éditoriale), Frédéric Goulet (coordination éditoriale), Ludovic Temple(coordination éditoriale), Jean-Marc Touzard (coordination éditoriale)

Innovation is often presented as one of the main catalysts for more sustainable and inclusive development. In the agricultural and food sectors, innovation is characterized not only by specificities arising from its relationship to nature, but also from the wide diversity of its stakeholders, ranging from farmers to consumers, and including intermediaries such as the research community and advisory services. 

Innovation emerges from interactions between these actors, who mobilize resources and produce knowledge in collaborative mechanisms in orderto generate changes. It encompasses domains as varied as production practices, market organization, and eating habits. Innovation is closely tied to major development challenges in its various forms: agroecological innovation, social innovation, territorial innovation, etc.

This book casts a look at innovation in agricultural and food systems.
  • It focuses in particular on supporting innovation, by examining methods and organizations, and on evaluating innovation using different yardsticks. 
  • The book is based on reflections and research originating from various scientific disciplines, on fieldwork carried out both in France and in many countries of the Global South, and finally on the experiences gained by accompanying and supporting innovative actors. 
  • It combines theoretical contributions on innovation with iconic case studies to illustrate its observations and discussions.This book is intended for teachers, professionals, students, and researchers.
Part 1 - Renewing agricultural approaches Chapter 1 - A history of innovation and its uses in agriculture
Chapter 2 - Agricultural and agrifood innovation in the 21st century: maintaining,erasing or reshaping its specificities?
Chapter 3 - Agricultural research and innovation: a socio-historical analysis

Part 2 - Forms ofinnovation in agriculture and the food sector Chapter 4 - Agroecological innovation: mobilizing ecological processes in agrosystems
Chapter 5 - Social innovation through short food supply chains: between networks andindividualities
Chapter 6 - Innovation, a precondition for the sustainability of localized agrifoodsystems
Chapter7 - Territorial innovation in the relationships between agriculture and thecity

Part 3- Providing support to the actors of innovation Chapter 8 - Designing and organizing support for collective innovation in agriculture
Chapter 9 - Action research in partnership and emancipatory innovation
Chapter 10 - Co-designing technical and organizational changes in agricultural systems
Chapter 11 - Advice to farms to facilitate innovation: between supervision and support
Chapter 12 - The ComMod and Gerdal approaches to accompany multi-actor collectives infacilitating innovation in agroecosystems

Part 4 - Evaluating the effects of innovations Chapter 13 - The abattoir, from the factory to the farm. Ethics and morality in thedynamics of innovation in agrifood systems
Chapter 14 - Evaluating the impacts of agricultural innovations
Chapter 15 - Evaluating impacts of innovations: benefits and challenges of amulti-criteria and participatory approach
Chapter 16 - Simulation tools to understand, evaluate and strengthen innovations onfarms

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Evaluation of the German official development actors from a partner country perspective

Faust, J., S. Leiderer, T. Masaki and B. Parks (2016), German Aid from a Partner Perspective. Experiencebased Perceptions from AidData’s 2014 Reform Efforts Survey, German Institute for Development Evaluation (DEval), Bonn.
4 pages

A key lesson from the past six decades of international development cooperation is that country ownership is essential for foreign aid to effectively support the domestic reform efforts of lowand middle-income countries. International development actors often seek to support their partner countries by helping to shape reform agendas, by offering policy advice, and by providing reform implementation support. 

However, little is known about the extent to which reform advice and assistance from international development partners is responsive to the needs and preferences of in-country stakeholders (e.g., politicians, public administrators, and civil society actors). 
  • Specifically, how do these domestic actors in low- and middleincome evaluate the policy influence and performance of their bilateral and multilateral development partners? 
  • What do they regard as the comparative strengths and weaknesses of different development partners? 
  • These questions are of particular significance to Germany, as its development cooperation system is often criticised for being overly complex and lacking a strong partner country orientation. 
A new study jointly undertaken by DEval and AidData seeks to answer these questions. It draws upon insights from 4,500 host government officials, civil society leaders, and private sector representatives in 126 low- and middle-income countries who participated in the 2014 Reform Efforts Survey – a survey conducted by a group of researchers at the College of William and Mary in the summer of 2014. It is also the first to systematically evaluate German official development actors – namely, German embassies, GIZ (GTZ), and KfW – from a partner country perspective.
Existing studies do not reveal much about the performance of German development partners from the perspective of the decision-makers in low-income and middle-income countries whom they seek to influence and assist.
Overall, German development cooperation enjoys a comparatively high level of visibility in its partner countries. GIZ’s above-average performance in the provision of useful policy advice is a positive and encouraging result, given that this implementing agency assigns a high level of priority to supporting partner country reform processes through analytical and advisory services.  
The country’s above-average performance in the environmental sector is also encouraging, as it reflects the growing importance of this core competency in German development cooperation. However, on balance, the overall results about the perceived
From a partner perspective the respective roles and responsibilities of German actors were rather unclear, which casts some doubt upon the justification for the current structure of the German development cooperation system. 
The results of this study are also sobering in that Germany is generally regarded as a middling performer with respect to the perceived utility of the reform implementation support it provides. This finding should be carefully evaluated, as German development cooperation’s strong field presence in partner countries and widely-touted implementation expertise mean that better results could reasonably have been expected.

Towards farmer-led research: a guidebook

Towards farmer-led research: a guidebookby Fioret C, Johnson K, Lam S, Thompson M & Hargreaves SK (2018)

The 24-page booklet Towards farmer-led research: a guidebook, published in 2018 by the Ecological Farmers Association of Ontario (EFAO), is a guide to working together with farmers in research. It synthesises literature on farmer-led research from around the world, with a focus on the North American context, and shares EFAO’s experiences and lessons from its Farmer-led Research (FLR) programme.

The guide offers a practical tool for researchers and practitioners seeking to develop, implement and evaluate farmer-led research programmes.

The authors define “farmer-led research” (which they also call “farmer participatory research”) as an approach that empowers farmers to collect data for their own farms while collaborating with scientists. EFAO's programme puts the focus on being farmer-driven, from the formulation of research questions and design to data collection and dissemination of results. FLR often leads to innovation, builds local capacity and supports livelihoods through better productivity, nutrition and household income.

Lessons learned thus far by EFAO’s FLR programme include:

  • Programme support, including scientific support and support for the farmer-researchers to connect with each other, is critical to farmer engagement with research.
  • Farmers are inherently curious but research is new to most of them. Multi-year grants are essential to building capacity and farmer involvement in FLR programmes.
  • A mechanism for adaptive management is needed to meet the dynamic needs of farmer-researchers (e.g. workshopping and utilisation-focused evaluation).
  • Focus on farmer-led! This includes farmer-led research priorities, project selection, project design and execution, and dissemination of results.
  • A model/mentor programme is invaluable for advice and support.

Assessing the Role of Cattle in Sustainable Food Systems

Assessing the Role of Cattle in Sustainable Food Systems
Nutrition Today: July/August 2018 - Volume 53 - Issue 4 - p 160-165

Balancing agriculture production with nutrition goals and environmental concerns forms a complex trilemma for food policy decisions. Critical questions within the trilemma debate revolve around (1) what is the optimal measure of environmental impact, (2) what is the optimal target for diet quality, and (3) what constitutes optimal land use? For each of these questions, the essential information remains incomplete and controversial.

The current environmental debate about agriculture is focused on the cost and impact of producing grains versus meats. This is an overly simplistic view of both agriculture and nutrition. Grains appear beneficial in LCA models because they produce lower GHGE/kcal, but they also have low nutrient density, whereas meats have comparatively high GHGE, but also have high nutritional value and are rich sources of protein and EAAs.

Sustainable production of protein needs to be a foundation of a sustainable diet, and livestock have a critical role in production of high-quality protein. Livestock currently produces more than one-third of world's protein, and ruminant animals have a unique capacity to convert nondigestible biomass into proteins providing the optimal balance of EAAs. These factors call for prudent use of ruminant animals to optimize land use for production of high-quality protein. Any recommendations for changes in agriculture production should consider the impact on climate but must also focus on maximizing use of natural resources for creation of healthful diets.

Safety evaluation of certain contaminants in food

Safety evaluationof certaincontaminantsin food
WHO FOOD ADDITIVES SERIES: 74 FAO JECFA Monographs 19 bis Prepared by the eighty-third meeting of the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA)
© World Health Organization and Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, 2018
992 pages

The full monograph on the 83rd JECFA appeared in recent days. Clocking in at 1000 pages.

This is the longest monograph in the 55 year history of the program. Along with a number of contaminants of food, the monograph contains the first re-analysis of aflatoxin in 20 years, an update on fumonisin and a new chapter on the interactions of the two compounds (additive or synergistic depending on endpoint). The JECFA found that as with other mammals, aflatoxin and fumonisin contribute to stunting in children.

Aflatoxin is potently carcinogenic in humans particularly so from early exposures, potently immunosuppressive (in humans) and a potent renal toxicant (in humans). Fumonisin is a potent renal toxin, a potent cancer promoter and causes birth defects. In Africa and parts of Latin America, co-exposure to the two toxins is ubiquitous. Aside from toxicology and health information, there is a risk characterization for different parts of the world. However, exposure data in Africa are and have always been inadequate to give a reliable assessment except for the few thousand children where exposure has been measured properly at a given point.

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Sustainably develop vanilla cultivation in Madagascar

© Dariusz Misztal, Federal Minister of the Environment Svenja Schulze presented Dr. Ing. Heinz-Jürgen Bertram, CEO of Symrise AG, the award in the category Germany’s most sustainable large-scale enterprise8 December 2018. Symrise has won this year's German Sustainability Award 2019 in the category “large-scale enterprise". Every year, Europe's largest award ceremony for ecological and social commitment honors exemplary sustainability achievements in business, municipalities and research. This year, Symrise convinced the jury in addition to its commitment to climate protection with its commitment to conserving biodiversity and promoting the living conditions of smallholders along the supply chain. As one of the three largest fragrance and flavor manufacturers worldwide, Symrise sources its raw materials from different ecosystems in various countries.

Including from Madagascar (see factsheet). Four-fifths of the vanilla produced for the food industry is sourced there. In order to sustainably develop vanilla cultivation in Madagascar in the long term, Symrise has been cooperating with the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH since 2010. 

  • The German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) promotes the development partnership as part of the programme. 
  • The work on sustainable vanilla production by the project partners enables around 10,000 families to improve their livelihoods. 
  • Since 2013, more than 5,000 farmers have successfully received vocational training in cropping methods, farm management and product diversification.
  • The low-yielding period was reduced, productivity in vanilla cultivation has risen by an average of 20 percent and Symrise receives sustainably cultivated vanilla of the highest quality.
The development partnership is supported by the programme, which was set up by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) to foster the involvement of the private sector in areas where business opportunities and development policy initiatives overlap.

BMZ supports your company with innovative projects and commercial investments in developing and emerging countries that have long-term benefits for the local population:
Agricultural Success stories

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Agregation of recent livestream and webinar video recordings

A number of organisations have put their video webstreams or Webinar recording online :

International conferences

3-4 October 2018. Ottawa, Canada. Towards a food secure future: lessons from CIFSRF and beyond
The following sessions videos are now available:
  1. Session 1: Sustainable agricultural production
  2. Session 2: Nutrition and health outcomes
  3. Session 3: Market access and income for small scale farmers
  4. Session 4: Collaborative partnerships
  5. Session 5: Scaling up innovations for impact
  6. Session 6: Gender equality in agriculture and food security
28-30 November 2018. Bangkok, Thailand. Accelerating the End of Hunger and Malnutrition.
IFPRI/FAO global event: conference synopsis (forthcoming)
A Glance PowerPoint embedded in this PAEPARD blogpost gives a concise overview of the event and the key messages that emerged
Videos of all plenary and parallel sessions (click here to view)
Presenter PowerPoints (click here to view those made available)

2-14 December 2019. Katowice, Poland. Africa at the COP24

11-17 December 2018. Cairo. The Intra-African Trade Fair 2018
Currently available Livestreams:
  • Aligning the interests of Governments and Industry on Trade and Investment in Africa
  • The Experience of China’s industrial park development and its implications on the industrialisation development of Africa for export manufacturing
  • Pulling Together Intra-African Trade Promotion Initiatives of African Multilateral Financial Institutions
  • Strategies for promotion of the Agro-processing value chain in Africa
  • Informal cross-border trade in Africa – What do we know? How can it be supported?
  • African Diaspora – Mobilising Diaspora Resources to Support Intra-African Trade


Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Coffee: Behind the success story

18 December 2018. Brussels. at the DEVCO InfoPoint. Coffee: Behind the success story. Can coffee production still be sustainable in times of climate change and price crisis?

Presentation of the main results of a recent study which analyses the evolution of value distribution within the coffee sector, evaluates the social and environmental impacts generated along the chain, and estimates the hidden costs offset on public authorities and third parties. This analysis is based on detailed case studies of value chains between France (on the consumption side) and Colombia, Peru and Ethiopia (on the production side). Discussion wase followed by a debate on what kind of public policy measures could be put in place.
  • Introduction: Regis Meritan, Head of Sector - Agricultural Growth, DEVCO C1 - Rural Development, Food Security, Nutrition
  • Christophe Alliot, BASIC, (Bureau for Appraisal of Social Impacts for Citizen information)
  • Julie Stoll, Director of Commerce Équitable France
Find below the link to watch the video of the conference:

High-level Forum Africa-Europe: ‘’Taking Cooperation to the Digital Age’’

17-18 December 2018. Vienna, Austria. High-level Forum Africa-Europe: ‘’Taking Cooperation to the Digital Age’’ 

This meeting was attended by the President of the Republic of Rwanda, Paul Kagame, as the current chairperson of the African Union, and the Federal Chancellor of the Republic of Austria, Sebastian Kurz, as Austria holds the rotating presidency of the Council of the EU, and African and European heads of state or government, CEOs of major global companies as well as innovative entrepreneurs and stakeholders.

The high‑level forum’s leitmotif “Taking cooperation to the digital age” promoted innovation and digitalisation as important enablers for our future development, so that everyone can benefit from the ongoing digital transformation. A lot of innovation is happening both in Africa and in Europe, with many creative start‑ups providing solutions for different emerging challenges, and this forum was an opportunity to showcase them and to learn from each other.

The high‑level forum provided a space to reflect and act on what needs to be done to secure prosperity and competitiveness on both continents as well as to deepen the relationship between Africa and Europe in all its aspects with a specific focus on taking cooperation to the digital age. During the high‑level segment, political leaders and CEOs were invited to share their vision on the current and future cooperation between Africa and Europe regarding innovation and digitalisation.

Opening of the High-Level Forum Africa-Europe

  • Sebastian Kurz, Federal Chancellor of the Republic of Austria 
  • Paul Kagame, President of the Republic of Rwanda 
  • Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission 
  • Moussa Faki Mahamat, Chairperson of the African Union Commission 
  • Antonio Tajani, President of the European Parliament
High-level dialogue "Taking cooperation to the digital age"
African and European political leaders, representatives of international organisations and CEOs of major companies will be invited to share their vision on the current and future cooperation between Africa and Europe regarding innovation and digitalisation.

Round Tables and Side Events 

The following round tables and side events were organised by LivingLab/Kenya and ECOTEC/Austria (African-European collaboration), the Austrian Federal Ministry of Education, Science and Research (cooperation initiative in higher education and research), Brainbows/R20AWS (mobilising finance for climate action), the European Investment Bank (connectivity in Africa) as well as the Austrian Development Agency and the Austrian Foundation for Development Research (ÖFSE) (connecting cities). . 
For detailed descriptions of the individual programme items and a list of the respective participants, please see the Detailed Programme 
  • RT 1: Agriculture 4.0 
  • RT 2: FinTech in Africa 
  • SE: Disrupt collaboration 
  • SE: Higher Education and Research 
  • RT 3: Jobs for the 21st century 
  • RT 4: Investing in Start-ups 
  • SE: Connecting Cities 
  • SE: Mobilising Finance for Climate Action in Africa 
  • RT 5: Sustainable Energy Access V
  • RT 7: Accelerating eCommerce in Africa 
  • SE: Connectivity in Africa

Ghana National Steering Committee for Aflatoxin Control

12 December 2018. Ghana inaugurated the National Steering Committee for Aflatoxin Control.

The Committee was established as part of the deliverables of a project titled:“Developing national policy and technical regulation for aflatoxin control in food and feed”. It is being coordinated by the Science and Technology Policy Research Institute (CSIR-STEPRI) and funded by AGRA.

The Committee was inaugurated by the Minister for Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation. Download the concept note here.

Statements were given by AGRA and USDA where they indicated their commitment to ensuring the production and marketing of safe and quality agricultural produce for improved health and increased income. The keynote speech was delivered by the Minister.

After the inauguration, the Committee met and elected their leaders: Prof. Richard Awuah (Chiarman); Mrs Lysbeth Adetola (Vice Chairman); Dr. Rose Omari Secretary; Ibrahim K. Asante (Vice Secretary).

The terms of reference for the Committee include:
  • Assist in the development of the National Policy and Technical Regulation for Aflatoxin Control (currently on-going)
  • Spearhead awareness creation on aflatoxins among policy makers and relevant stakeholders
  • Ensure the implementation of the National Policy and Technical Regulation for Aflatoxin Control
  • Seek partnership with national, regional and international organisation championing aflatoxin control agenda
  • Facilitate coordination of aflatoxin activities in various Ministries, Departments and Agencies
  • Revive the Innovation Platform for aflatoxin control that was established in 2015
  • Mobilise resources for aflatoxin control activities

Monday, December 17, 2018

Agriculture and Aid for Trade (AfT)

13 December 2018. Webinar. The Global Donor Platform for Rural Development organised a webinar on aligningpolicies and programmes on agriculture and Aid for Trade.

Speaker: Paul Engel 
  • Welcome and introduction – 10 min
  • Presentation – 15 min
  • Q and A and discussion – 20 min
Agriculture and Aid for Trade (AfT) are two key areas of development cooperation that share many synergies, but are still falling short of coordination. This gap is even larger if we compare agriculture and trade per se. The DONOR PLATFORM’S WORK STREAM ON INCLUSIVE AGRIBUSINESS & TRADE has been committed to address these gaps and increase the dialogue between the trade/AfT and agriculture departments of donor agencies, resulting in the inclusion of trade issues into agriculture and rural development (ARD) programming and vice-versa.

To enrich this dialogue, the Donor Platform commissioned a study (in press) that looks into areas and opportunities to enhance alignment and cooperation between the ARD and Aid for Trade (donor) communities. 
  • The study was based on consultations with different informants from donor agencies and knowledge institutes, as well as review of documents. 
  • It aims to set the stage for practical, evidence-based exchanges about how to deal with the challenges of implementing policy coherence and complementarity between these two communities. 
  • It provides examples of where alignment is already taking place, such as in the project Alliances for Action (by the International Trade Centre), FAO's Aid for Trade Africa programme, or the COMESA Regional Agricultural Investment Plan. 
This webinar (video recording forthcoming) shared the results of this study and invited participants to share their own experiences in this field. 

The study in currently in press and will be available shortly.

Paul Engel 2017. Aligning ARD and trade policies to improve sustainable development impact. (Discussion Paper 221). Maastricht: ECDPM and GDPRD.


How to formulate and deliver compelling messages about your research.

13 December 2018. Webinar. This second AgriFoSe2030 policy briefs webinar focuses on how to profile your target audience, and then how to formulate and deliver compelling messages about your research.

On the 14th of december 2017 AgriFose2030 arranged the webinar “How to write policy briefs in the field of sustainable agriculture and food security”. You can watch the webinar here.

In the AgriFoSe2030 programme, the science we do is about change: about how to improve food security and make farming practices more sustainable. But new knowledge does not always lead to change. We need to bring our science to the change-makers, to help them understand the implications.

In this webinar we looked at policy briefs: what they are, who they are for, and how to write them well. The webinar was run by the highly experienced AgriFoSe2030 Communication and Engagement Theme. The webinar was open to all members of the AgriFoSe2030 Academy. Watch the whole webinar below:

Assessing the Quality of Farmer Field School Programmes

12 December 2018. Rome. This event was organized as part of the Farmer Field Schools (FFS) global knowledge product (GKP). Dr van den Berg presented the work done by Wageningen University (the Netherlands) in collaboration with the global FFS team on reviewing FFS impact evaluations and developing guidance for MEL in FFS programmes.

The event was web-streamed.
  • Farmer Field Schools (FFS) are implemented by an increasing number of projects and organizations worldwide. As such, in 2018, FAO collaborated with Wageningen University to review the status and impact of FFS programmes since 2005. 
  • Building on a review of impact studies, a survey on the status of implementation at global level, and two case studies in Indonesia and Malawi, the review provides an overview of achievements and avenues for improvement of FFS programmes today.
  • Building on the review, a guidance document for monitoring, evaluation and learning (MEL), and impact assessment of FFS has also been developed. 
  • The document builds on the discussions held by FFS experts in Bangkok last September as well as contributions received from FAO’s divisions, regional and national offices and external partners such as CARE and CIP. 
  • The guidance aim at strengthening MEL and impact assessment of FFS to further improve its quality across projects.

Thursday, December 13, 2018

World Resources Institute: Creating a Sustainable Food Future

Creating a Sustainable Food Future
A Menu of Solutions to Feed Nearly 10 Billion People by 2050
by Tim Searchinger, Richard Waite, Craig Hanson, Janet Ranganathan, Patrice Dumas and Emily Matthews - December 2018, 96 pages

The World Resources Institute (WRI) published a new report, Creating a Sustainable Food Future, that states the world must prepare to feed the planet’s growing population sustainably, reducing agricultural land and greenhouse gas emissions, and suggests that genetically modified organisms and gene editing may be useful tools in achieving this goal. According to a summary of the report by ISAAA, population is set to rise to 10 billion people worldwide by 2050, while food demand is projected to rise by 50 per cent.

The report offers several approaches to feeding the world sustainably, including reducing food loss and waste, changing diets to consume less beef and lamb, reducing population growth, increasing harvests on the same land area, stopping deforestation, restoring peatlands, improving aquaculture and better management of wild fisheries, and use of innovative technologies and farming methods to lower agricultural greenhouse gas emissions.

To read WRI's recap of the report, visit "How to sustainably feed 10 billion people by 2050, in 21 charts", and to read the original report in full, visit WRI.

Drones for Agriculture: potentials and challenges on the African continent

11 December 2018. The e-Agriculture and The Technical Centre for Agriculture and Rural Cooperation (CTA)'s Unmanned Aerial Systems Community (UAV4Ag) held this webinar "Drones for Agriculture: potentials and challenges on the African continent".
  • There is a general consensus that smallholder farming needs to become more productive, sustainable and profitable. Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) – or drone-based systems – services can help make this possible by bringing some of the tools of precision agriculture to producers, which include large and medium-scale holdings and associations of small-scale farmers growing the same crop in contiguous areas. 
  • UAS can help increase the returns to farmers and create knowledge-intensive new employment opportunities in rural areas, offering educated youth an alternative to migrating to the cities.
  • UAS services are increasingly adopted in developed countries. On the other hand, the deployment of the technology in Africa faces a number challenges which the speaker will present together with enabling environments which are progressively materializing.
Presentation delivered by Giacomo Rambaldi of CTA.

Social media contacts

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Strategic foresight in CGIAR : Agriculture & Food Systems to 2050

13 November 2018. Seattle, United States. University of Washington. Foresight @CGIAR One-day pre-SC-7 event on horizon scanning and foresight in CGIAR 
The aim of this event was to inform the development of a process for strategic foresight in CGIAR drawing on the outcomes of the two foresight workshops—specifically, the reflections related to key drivers of change and trends that will influence the agri-food system.

  • Synthesize results of ISPC foresight exercise on drivers of change and future trends affecting the global agri-food systems, and their implications for CGIAR research agenda.
  • Consider options for the development of future Independent Science and Development Council (ISDC) work on foresight and horizon scanning.
The book Agriculture and Food Systems to 2050 (World Scientific, published 20 November 2018, 678 pages) was launched during the event. 
  • This book features a comprehensive foresight assessment, exploring the pressures — threats as well as opportunities — on the global agriculture & food systems between now and 2050.
  • Pdfs of individual chapters are also available on the Publisher website
  • The overarching aim of this book is to help readers understand the context, by analyzing global trends and anticipating change for better planning and constructing pathways from the present to the future by focusing on the right questions and problems. 
  • The book contextualizes the role of international agricultural research in addressing the complex challenges posed by UN 2030 Agenda and beyond, and identifies the decisions that scientific leaders, donors and policy makers need to take today, and in the years ahead, to ensure that a global population rising to nine billion or more combined with rising incomes and changing diets can be fed sustainably and equitably, in the face of the growing climate threats.

Session 1. Introduction - Synthesis of IPSC Foresight
Panel 1: International Ag Research 4 Development – The changing roles
Panel 2: A new green revolution without mineral fertilizer? New pathways towards sustainable intensification
Panel 3: Disruptive technologies & innovation; Leapfrogging for development – opportunities for CGIAR?
  • Patrick van der Duin (STT) – Disruptive technology in agriculture
  • Bruce Friedrich (Good Food Institute) – Futures of food systems
  • Jonathan Wadsworth (World Bank) – Leapfrogging for development in S.S. Africa
Interactive session

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

The Role of Local Governance in Urban Food Security

11 December 2018. For 25 years, the Brazilian city of Belo Horizonte has been an unsung hero in the fight against food insecurity. As Dr. M. Jahi Chappell put it, “The course to universal food security will never run smooth[ly], but steps forward have and can be made. Belo Horizonte has walked a bit farther down the path than most.”

This webinar explored a number of issues:
  • What special role can municipal governments play in food security, compared to regional, national, and international governments?
  • What enables government institutions to maintain their commitments to food security over the long-term?
  • How can U.S. development policymakers best support local governance?
  • Olivier de Schutter Former United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food Secretary 
  • Maíra Colares Secretary for Social Assistance, Food Security and Citizenship, Belo Horizonte 
  • Chris Shepherd-Pratt Policy Team Lead, Bureau for Food Security, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)

Mainstreaming Biodiversity for Food and Nutrition

The Biodiversity for Food and Nutrition Initiative shares a new open-access guide that collects lessons learned from four partner countries to help others harness agricultural biodiversity to transform the food system for development, food security and nutrition.

At the recent 2018 UN Biodiversity Conference COP14 in Sharm El-Sheikh (COP14 of the CBD), the BFN team hosted a side event in which it launched an open-access toolkit entitled “Biodiversity Mainstreaming for Healthy ; Sustainable Food Systems”. This guide compiles case studies from all four countries, key resources and methodologies to share the knowledge accumulated by the BFN Partners, promoting the conservation and sustainable use of local biodiversity.

It is free to view and download from the BFN website and CGIAR CGSpace Repository.

Throughout its six years of experience in Brazil, Kenya, Sri Lanka and Turkey, the Biodiversity for Food and Nutrition Initiative (BFN Project) has pioneered a partner-based methodology using indigenous food biodiversity as a lens to address malnutrition, farmer livelihood resilience, and sustainability. To date, the initiative has documented and shared knowledge on 195 nutrient-rich, locally-adapted species that range from African leafy vegetables to Amazonian fruits