Rural development

State of Food and Agriculture Report 2013

The Food and Agriculture Organisation’s 2013 ‘State of Food and Agriculture report, focusing on ‘Food Systems for Better Nutrition’ is available online and print. It argues that improving nutrition and reducing these costs must begin with food and agriculture. The traditional role of agriculture in producing food and generating income is fundamental, but agriculture and the entire food system, from inputs and production, through processing, storage, transport and retailing, to consumption, can contribute much more to the eradication of malnutrition.

NGO Warns Malawi on Subsidy Programme

A strong advice has gone out to Malawi government authorities to deploy more people to monitor the implementation of subsidy programme to curb corruption, favouritism and bias that have soiled the implementation of the programme since its inception. 

Executive director of the local NGO, Future Planning for the Child, Douglas Ng’oma gave the advice during Kalondolondo meeting in Malawi’ northern district of Karonga, where he accused Ministry of Agriculture of failing its work in monitoring the programme.

Gap Between Rich and Poor Concerns Ibrahim

Sudanese-born philanthropist, Mo Ibrahim, says the gap between rich and poor in South Africa is of great concern.

Delivering an annual Nelson Mandela Lecture in Pretoria, Ibrahim, is of the view that after states that after nearly 20 years of independence, one can ask 'what is going on here?

He argues that South Africa is the most unequal country in the whole world, adding that event the country’s land policy and the willing seller willing buyer principle should be revisited.

USDA Warns the World on Food Security

According to a recent global forecast by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), by the end of the next decade food security could deteriorate in some of the world's poorest countries.
The USDA says that by 2023 the number of food-insecure people is likely to increase by nearly 23 percent to 868 million (at a slightly faster rate than projected population growth of 16 percent).

Food Shortage Hits Malawi

Nearly 10 percent of Malawi's 13 million people face hunger due of low yields of the main staple maize, prolonged dry spells and flooding.
According to Malawi Vulnerability Assessment Committee, "The total number of people who will not be able to meet their annual food requirement during the 2013/14 consumption period is 1 461 940, representing 9.5 percent of national total population."

NGO in State Food Security Programme Controversy

According to an article by Carien du Plessis and Yolandi Groenewald, President Jacob Zuma has coaxed government departments into committing nearly R900 million to a programme run by a non-governmental organisation (NGO) he chairs and which is run by his cousin.

They say a multimillion-rand state food security programme, set to be approved by Cabinet later this month, has in effect been subcontracted to the Masibambisane Rural Development Initiative, a private NGO chaired by Zuma and run by Deebo Mzobe.

Global Crop Yields Not Keeping Pace With Demand

A new study by PLOS ONE has found that the world is not increasing yields of major crops quickly enough to meet future food demands from an expanding population, presenting a ‘looming and growing agricultural crisis’.

The study also recommends that yields of maize, rice, wheat and soybean, which are responsible for providing 43 per cent of global dietary energy and 40 per cent of protein, must increase between 60 and 110 per cent by 2050 to satisfy projected food consumption.

Namibia Hard-Hit by Drought

The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) says that desert-hardy Namibians, overwhelmed by the worst drought to hit their country in 30 years, are surviving off wild fruits with no harvest in sight until March 2014.
IFRC’s Hanna Butler, who recently visited Kunene, one of the worst hit regions in northern Namibia, points out that, "A lot of the people I met had nothing in their food stores, absolutely nothing."


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