Food security

FAO Launches Guide on Biofuels

The United Nation Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) has launched Bioenergy and Food Security (BEFS) Analytical Framework, a guide aimed at helping policymakers to calculate the costs and benefits of investing in biofuels.

The Bioenergy and Food Security (BEFS) Analytical Framework was developed over the past three years and tested in Peru, Tanzania and Thailand.

1.3 Billion Tonnes of Food Wasted Annually – FAO

A staggering study conducted by the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) has revealed that approximately one third of the world's food produced for human consumption each year, representing 1.3 billon tonnes, gets lost or wasted.

The research further discloses that industrialised and developing countries dissipate roughly the same quantities of food, being 670 and 630 million tonnes respectively, while every year, consumers in rich countries waste almost as much food (222 million tonnes) as the entire net food production of sub-Saharan Africa (230 million tonnes).

Subsistence Farming A Way to Overcome Poverty

Poverty is on the increase since the inception of democracy in South Africa. Close to 15 million South Africans are now receiving social grants. The introduction of government-sponsored job creation projects, especially in rural areas, could enable people to grow their local economies while earning an income. This could ease pressure on government as most people will no longer rely on social grants for survival. This could be the first practical step towards eradicating poverty. 

Drought Leaves Millions Starving – WFP

The head of the United Nations' World Food Programme (WFP) says a severe drought, high food prices and conflict have left more than five million people hungry across the Horn of Africa.
WFP executive director, Josette Sheeran, points out that the drought began with the failure of rains late last year in northern and eastern regions of Kenya, south-central Somalia and eastern Ethiopia.
Sheeran warns that the number of people in need of food assistance could increase further if the region sees more poor rains.

Developing Countries Urged to Invest in Rural Youth

The United Nations International Fund for Agriculture (IFAD) says that developing countries should invest in rural youth in order to eradicate poverty in those communities and to ensure global food security.
Head of IFAD, Kanayo F. Nwanze, is of the view that supporting young women and men is critical to building vibrant rural economies, which in turn is key to overcoming larger challenges such as reducing hunger and poverty, mitigating climate change, achieving energy security and protecting the environment.

NDA Call for Different Ways of Alleviate Poverty

The chairperson of the National Development Agency (NDA), Malose Kekana, has called for different ways to alleviate poverty in the country.
Speaking at the appointment of the new NDA board in Johannesburg, Kekana pointed out that the one thing that the NDA has to do is to tap into those initiatives and leverage the little money that it has in order to reach more people.

Possible Short to Long-Term Impacts of the January 2011 Floods to South African and Some of Her SADC Trading Partners

The majority of agricultural systems in South Africa and Africa at large are rain fed. Rainfall is a natural phenomenon whose occurrence can be erratic resulting in weather shocks such as droughts and floods which can have devastating impacts on the socio-economic livelihoods of the people. Floods and droughts trigger a multiplicity of negative impacts to economies relying on rain-fed agriculture.

UN to Focus on Mozambique Riots

The United Nations has called an urgent meeting on rising global food prices in an attempt to head off a repeat of the 2008 crisis that sparked riots around the world.

According to the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) spokesperson, Christopher Matthews "The purpose of holding the meeting is for exporting and importing countries to engage in constructive discussions on appropriate reactions to the current market situation."

Time to Prioritise Farming

It has been a very exciting first decade of what is promising to be the defining century for southern African agriculture. Following an acknowledgment of the failure of strictly market-orientated structural adjustment policies in the late 1990s, states in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) have begun to work out a new balance between these policies, and the heavy state interventions in agriculture that preceded them in the immediate post-colonial period.


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