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UN Report Provides Update on Sustainable Agricultural Policies and Practices

Monday, 03 September 2012
On 10 August 2012 the UN General Assembly (UNGA) has released a report of the UN Secretary-General on agriculture development and food security, which refers to the progress in implementation of sustainable agriculture policies and practices based on the Five Rome Principles for Sustainable Global Food Security.

The Five Rome Principles for Sustainable Global Food Security, adopted in November 2009 by the World Summit on Food Security in Rome, provide a strategic underpinning for coordinated action by all stakeholders at global, regional and country levels while embracing an approach to fighting hunger.

These principles are focused on a call on the international community to:

(a) invest in country‐owned plans, aimed at channelling resources to well‐designed and results-based programmes and partnerships;

(b) foster strategic coordination at national, regional and global levels to improve governance, promote better allocation of resources, avoid duplication of efforts and identify response gaps;

(c) strive for a comprehensive twin‐track approach to food security;

(d) ensure a strong role for the multilateral system by sustained improvements in efficiency, responsiveness, coordination and effectiveness of multilateral institutions; and

(e) ensure sustained and substantial commitment by all partners to investment in agriculture and food and nutrition security, with the provision of necessary resources in a timely and reliable fashion, aimed at multi‐year plans and programmes.

The UN General Assembly’s report highlights the commitments of policy makers at the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD, or Rio+20) on the right to food. It describes the current state of food and nutrition insecurity, structural causes of hunger and malnutrition and environmental impacts such as climate change. It also points to low productivity and low investment in smallholder agriculture, land degradation and water scarcity. Despite these challenges, it describes an increase in investment in agriculture, particularly in Africa, aimed at tackling hunger and ensuring balanced nutrition. Moreover, it depicts growing demand for food crops for energy, evolving patterns of food consumption, food losses and waste, adaptation to climate change, and protracted crises and conflicts.

Further, the report indicates the importance of plant Genetic Resources to sustainable agriculture and global nutrition. This fact reveals that agricultural activity and food security are directly connected to biodiversity’s protection issues.   

Source: United Nations, IISD Reporting Services
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