Crops

Feeding the world through sustainable agriculture

Smallholder farmers are the main producers of food globally and provide 60 to 80 per cent of the food produced in developing countries. As the world’s population grows, these farmers are under growing pressure to enhance their productivity and ensure food security, especially for the rural poor.

Yet numerous factors make farming increasingly difficult for them. These include climate variability and change, water scarcity and land degradation and high levels of post-harvest food losses.

Improving the soil, managing pests

Access to diverse agricultural technologies is key to ensuring smallholder farmers can continue to feed the world.

IFAD-supported projects help farmers to increase yields through enhanced soil and pest management, fertilizer use, access to better quality seeds, and other improved agricultural practices.

Our projects improve farmers’ access to input and output markets, as well as to rural financial services that will allow them to invest in their farms.

They also enhance the institutional capacities of farmer organizations to meet the needs of their members, while ensuring natural resources are managed properly and growth is sustainable.

Growing more food and developing new opportunities

Our approach to agriculture is context-specific. We strive to create opportunities for farmers at various levels with different assets, and for both women and men farmers.

We also support the growing number of rural youth, who frequently find themselves squeezed out of farming and are looking for alternative income sources.

In depth

In depth

Food loss reduction

Food loss has negative impacts on the livelihoods, nutrition and food security of millions of smallholder farmers. 

Spotlight

Spotlight

In Turkey, strawberry farms bring opportunities for rural youth

Youth who grew up in the Taurus Mountains of Turkey have traditionally moved to the big cities to pursue their careers. But recently, thanks to an IFAD-supported project, the region’s farmers have begun growing strawberries. Highland strawberries are proving quite popular, driving the growth of a new regional value chain – and bringing the region’s youth back to the countryside to take part.

Tags: YOUTH, LAND, CROPS

Projects

Projects

Brazil

Rural Sustainable Development Project in the Semi-arid Region of Bahia

Nepal

High-Value Agriculture Project in Hill and Mountain Areas

Indonesia

South Sumatera Smallholder Tree Crops Development Project

Related news

Related news

IFAD report predicts steep drop in African staple crops by 2050, prompting urgent call for adaptation funding at COP26

October 2021 - NEWS
Staple crops in eight African countries could decrease by as much as 80 percent by 2050 in some areas if temperatures continue to rise due to climate change, according to a report released today by IFAD.

El FIDA centrará su actividad en México en promover la inclusión económica activa de la población rural más pobre y vulnerable

May 2020 - NEWS
El Fondo Internacional de Desarrollo Agrícola (FIDA), el organismo especializado de las Naciones Unidas para el desarrollo rural, ha validado su estrategia de actuación hasta 2025 en México. En ella se fija como principal objetivo promover la inclusión económica activa de la población rural para luchar contra la pobreza.

Canada provides cad$50m for unique 5-year integrated resilience program by UN agencies

July 2017 - NEWS
The United Nations’ food and agriculture agencies are embarking on an unprecedented joint programme to work with vulnerable communities in three crisis-prone areas over five years to meet their immediate food needs and boost their resilience, while addressing the root causes of food insecurity.

Related publications

Related publications

What can smallholder farmers grow in a warmer world? Climate change and future crop suitability in East and Southern Africa

October 2021
With funding from ASAP2, eight Climate Risk Analysis reports were produced by the University of Cape Town, covering Angola, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Rwanda, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Stock-take report on agroecology in IFAD operations: An integrated approach to sustainable food systems

September 2021
This report presents the results of IFAD’s stock-take on agroecology.

How to do note: Promote neglected and underutilized species for domestic markets

March 2021
This How to Do Note is part of a series of five Notes that accompany the NUS Operational Framework.

Related stories

Related stories

In Turkey, strawberry farms bring opportunities for rural youth

December 2021 - STORY
Youth who grew up in the Taurus Mountains of Turkey have traditionally moved to the big cities to pursue their careers. But recently, thanks to an IFAD-supported project, the region’s farmers have begun growing strawberries. Highland strawberries are proving quite popular, driving the growth of a new regional value chain – and bringing the region’s youth back to the countryside to take part.

A green new hope for degraded soils

December 2021 - STORY
Over half the world’s arable land is already degraded, and this number is growing at a rate of 23 hectares per minute. But with the support of an IFAD-funded project – along with an unlikely ally – farmers in Bolivia’s Pando region are restoring the land in record time.

Effective micro-organisms: The key to healthy soil and healthy diets in rural Lao

November 2021 - STORY
Agriculture is the main source of income and livelihood in rural Lao. But Lao crops are highly climate-sensitive, leaving farmers with little room for error when it comes to climate adaptation.