Fourth global meeting of the Farmers' Forum
20 - 23 February 2012
The fourth global consultation of the Farmers’ Forum welcomed 72 representatives from smallholder farmers’ and rural producers’ organizations from around the world. Between February 18 and 23, they interacted with IFAD and selected partners, including the Food and Agricultural Organization, AgriCord and the European Commission, among other donors, research institutes and NGOs.
The Forum organized a special preparatory session on how to make agriculture more accessible to young men and young women. Importantly, more than half of the 43 participants were young representatives of farmers’ organizations. They then shared their session’s synthesis of deliberations with the Farmers Forum to discussion.
IFAD presented the Partnership in Progress: 2010 – 2011 report to facilitate discussions on the nature and performance of operational partnerships between farmers’ organizations, IFAD and other partners. Discussions on partnerships and dialogue on current issues were further enhanced by working group sessions on:
• the progress achieved and future goals of partnerships at country and regional levels
• sustainable agriculture, agro-ecology: how to promote and scale up good practices on the ground
• sustainable fisheries: how fishers' organizations can contribute to sustainable management of marine resources while improving incomes
• institutional development and financial sustainability of farmers' organizations
• engaging RIO+20 UN Conference on Sustainable Development: the objectives of FOs and IFAD and they can support each other.
Based on discussions during the Farmers’ Forum and with IFAD management, participants agreed on a Synthesis of Deliberations on the evolving partnerships. Ms Rachel Kalaba of MIJARC delivered the summary of the statement to the thirty-fifth session of the IFAD Governing Council.
After the closing of the Governing Council, farmers’ organizations, IFAD and selected partners held a wide variety of side events, from organic farming to women’s leadership.