Food production cannot ensure food security, says FAO head

Monday 23 February 2015

Speaking at International Forum on Agriculture and Climate Change, FAO Director-General urges to change the model of crop production

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Increasing production has for long been seen as the natural pathway to ending hunger, but today even though the world produces enough food to feed everyone, hunger remains a problem, the head of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) said at the International Forum on Agriculture and Climate Change, held in Paris on February 20. At least 805 million still go without enough food on a regular basis, pointed out FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva.

"Since food production is not a sufficient condition for food security, it means that the way we are producing is no longer acceptable," said Graziano da Silva. “What we are still mostly seeing is a model of production that cannot prevent the degradation of soils and the loss of biodiversity, both of which are essential goods, especially for future generations. This model must be reviewed. We need a paradigm shift. Food systems need to be more sustainable, inclusive and resilient," he added.

Agriculture has a potentially large role to play not only in guaranteeing food security but also in building resilience to the affects of climate change and in reducing humankind's emissions of global warming gases, according to the FAO head. “The impacts of climate change are no longer an anticipated threat. They are now a crystal-clear reality right before our eyes,” he warns, adding: “Climate change will not only affect food production but also the availability of food and the stability of supplies. And in a global, interdependent economy, climate change makes the global market for agricultural products less predictable and more volatile."

In his remarks, the FAO Director-General underscored the important role played by healthy soils. "Soil hosts at least one quarter of the world's biodiversity and is key in the carbon cycle. They help us to mitigate and adapt to climate change," he said. 2015 has been designated by the UN General Assembly as the International Year of soils, and FAO is the lead agency for coordinating the year's activities.


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  • "Agriculture has a

    "Agriculture has a potentially large role to play not only in guaranteeing food security but also in building resilience to the affects of climate change and in reducing humankind's emissions of global warming gases, according to the FAO head. ÔÇ£The impacts of climate change are no longer an anticipated threat. They are now a crystal-clear reality right before our eyes,ÔÇØ he warns, adding: ÔÇ£Climate change will not only affect food production but also the availability of food and the stability of supplies. And in a global, interdependent economy, climate change makes the global market for agricultural products less predictable and more volatile."" -- this is nothing new. Also, our forefathers adopted to vagaries of monsoon, a farming system along with animal husbandry. This includes climate change as it is not new. The natural variations in rainfall -- droughts & floods. As for as global warming is concerned, there is no realistic impact on agriculture as our seasonal change far far higher and crops could be adopted to wider range of temperature. The main factor that influence the production is the rainfall & snow melt.

    Some of these I discussed in my books: Agroclimatic/Agrometeorological Techniques: As applicable to dry-land agriculture in developing countries [1993] and "Green" Green Revolution: Agriculture in the perspective of climate change [2011].


    Food availability & nutrition security are different factors, depends upon non-climate issues.

    Dr. S. Jeevananda Reddy

    Posted by: Anonymous | 2 years ago | Reply
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