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Balancing Biodiversity with Agricultural Development – Episode 24

This month’s episode focuses on the upcoming UN Convention on Biological Diversity, set to take place in Kunming, China this October.

To transform our food systems we must reimagine how they are financed, says IFAD President

To transform our food systems to end global hunger and be sustainable in a changing world, we must first reimagine how they are financed, said the President of IFAD to world leaders attending the UN Food Systems Summit, which ends today.

Raising hope and opportunity in rural Tajikistan: Obidova’s story

Obidova is busy these days. Whether she’s setting up a new shelter for her birds or going to the markets to sell, her days are filled with taking care of her family and her poultry business. But just a year ago, things looked very different.

Preventing the next pandemic by integrating human, animal and environmental health

The COVID-19 pandemic has made it clearer than ever that human health is not just a matter of providing people with medical care. To avoid future pandemics, we need to recognize that the well-being of people, animals, plants and ecosystems must be addressed as a dynamic whole.

Small-scale farmers need decent wages - IFAD calls on world leaders to commit to action at Food Systems Summit

It is an outrage that rural small-scale farmers in developing countries, who grow a third of our global food, are paid a pittance for their work, said the President of IFAD who today asks world leaders attending the UN Food Systems Summit to take concrete actions to change this.

Re-imagining food systems through the climate–nutrition nexus

The food we eat plays a role in not just our health, but that of our descendants. How we grow, hunt, fish or gather it, how we process it and bring it to market, affects the world around us. These simple relationships are the foundation of the climate–nutrition nexus.

A glimpse into the Pacific food systems

Discover the specificities of food systems in the Pacific region, why they are particularly fragile, and the role of the island communities in protecting them.

Three ways IFAD can support digital agriculture in the Asia-Pacific region

Farmers and agribusinesses across the Asia-Pacific region are increasingly making use of new digital technologies. IFAD and Grow Asia have recently released a report exploring how these technologies are reshaping the region’s agriculture and how IFAD’s investments can accelerate the adoption of these technologies.

IFAD’s Rural Development Report 2021

Our food systems are failing us. From the climate, to the environment, to nutrition, to human health and well-being, they are not delivering the outcomes we all need. IFAD’s Rural Development Report 2021 describes the systemic issues that have led to the situation we are in, identifies priorities for transforming our food systems, and provides recommended actions to achieve meaningful change.

Global food systems must be disrupted and changed – new IFAD report recommends concrete actions for policymakers

Transforming global food systems to become more inclusive, fair and sustainable may seem an insurmountable challenge, yet there are concrete actions policymakers can take, according to a new report released by IFAD today.

African small-scale farmers use radio and mobile phones to send a message of optimism and caution to world leaders attending Food Systems Summit

Small-scale farmers in sub-Saharan Africa are impacted disproportionately by climate change, poverty and undernutrition, yet a report released today shows many remain optimistic about the future of farming.

Amplifying rural needs and voices: A conversation with Helene Papper

It’s clearer than ever before: to address global crises, the communities who implement solutions must be involved, their voices heard, their knowledge included. But how do we bring forward voices from the world’s most remote areas?

Investing in the foundations of Gambian agriculture

Roots are the essence of farming: they erect healthy plants and help grant a predictable and generous harvest. The IFAD-supported ROOTS project seeks to promote exactly that strength in The Gambia.

Small-scale producers are central to Africa’s forest restoration efforts

Small-scale farmers have an important role to play in restoring Africa’s forests. Two IFAD-supported projects in Eritrea and Kenya are helping these farmers engage in efforts that both restore local forests and have direct economic and social benefits for their communities.

Finding a way forward: Sector reforms in Lesotho’s wool and mohair industry

Lesotho’s efforts to nationalize its wool and mohair industry set off a cascade of unintended consequences. At the government’s request, IFAD and the WAMPP project commissioned a study to analyze the impacts of these regulations and inform future policy revisions.

The labour market dynamics of COVID-19

Over a year and a half into the COVID-19 pandemic, there’s still a lot to learn about how the labour market in developing countries is reshaping itself – especially in terms of gender dynamics. Our latest study tracks employment trends in Nigeria with both pre- and post-pandemic data.

Building a Great Green Wall: Four lessons learned from the World Bank assessment

Helping the people of the Sahel prosper requires a Great Green Wall stretching across Africa. IFAD is embarking on a series of projects to help build this “wall.” We recently sat down with the World Bank to learn from their successes and challenges across a decade of their own project implementations in this region.

Support for Syrian herders and farmers to safeguard livelihoods in the face of the COVID-19 crisis

IFAD has contributed a US$544,795 grant to alleviate the pressure of the COVID pandemic on the Syrian rural community.

Mainstreaming agroecology in the Asia-Pacific region

Agroecology is a holistic approach that integrates elements of ecology, economy, and society within a food system. It also supports the well-being of small-scale producers, especially in terms of their empowerment and social inclusion. IFAD has a long tradition of supporting agroecology practices throughout Asia-Pacific, especially the Himalayas region.

Global climate leader appointed Associate Vice President at UN rural development agency IFAD

More investments in innovations and knowledge are urgently needed to increase the ability of rural people to adapt to climate change and shocks, said Jyotsna Puri, a long-time advocate for climate change adaptation and evidence-based policy and big data, who today takes up the position of Associate Vice President of the Strategy and Knowledge Department at IFAD.

Agroecology can address food systems failures - new IFAD report

In its first comprehensive assessment of agroecology, the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) announced today that 60 percent of its projects use practices from this holistic approach to sustainable agricultural production.

The Lare Milk Dealers find their niche

Milk processing is normally a profitable venture in Kenya’s Nakuru County, but the Lare Milk Dealers Youth Group struggled to enter the market at first. Thanks to trainings hosted by an IFAD-supported project and some innovative additions to their business model, they’re now thriving.

Empowering rural women with Agroecological Logbooks

The video presents the main results of using the Agroecological Logbook methodology in projects supported by IFAD in Brazil.

Black jelly brings a more resilient future for rural Viet Nam

Light and refreshing, with a mild, earthy flavour, Vietnamese black jelly is the perfect end-of-summer treat. It’s already popular throughout Viet Nam and its neighbouring countries – and thanks to the work of local growers and an IFAD-supported project, it’s now destined for wider audiences.

Protecting biodiversity is crucial to fighting hunger - IFAD calls for increased investments ahead of World Conservation Congress

If we do not invest more in protecting biodiversity, development cannot be sustainable and we will not eradicate hunger or achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, said the President of IFAD ahead of his participation in the IUCN World Conservation Congress that begins in Marseille today.

Gender-focused solutions for the post-COVID return to rural areas

The COVID-19 pandemic has given rise to waves of internal migration as urban workers return to rural areas. IFAD must identify solutions to the challenges this phenomenon has created, and will continue to create, for rural agricultural development. This is especially critical from a gender equity perspective.

Restoration takes root: Nasreen’s story

Nasreen’s family was struggling to make ends meet. Now, thanks to an IFAD-supported project, she runs her own ecological farm that produces high-quality, chemical-free vegetables – all while it restores the local ecosystem.

The Government of Mali and Rome-based agencies launch a joint programme to build resilience among rural people

The Ministry of Rural Development of Mali, the three United Nations Rome-based agencies (FAO, IFAD and WFP) and G5 Sahel officially launched a joint programme to help rural people in Mali build their resilience to climate change, conflict and COVID-19 on 26 August in Bamako.

Connecting Farmers to the Food Systems Summit – Episode 23

In this month’s episode, we continue our focus on the first-ever UN Food Systems Summit.

Returning to Brazil’s Gente de Valor project: Lessons on sustainable impact

The Gente de Valor project was designed to assist the sertanejos (those who live in Brazil’s semi-arid region). It featured a community-driven development approach that promoted active participation and local leadership. Five years after the project ended, IFAD returned to evaluate the project’s outcomes and the effects of this approach.

What we’re reading for World Water Week

Here’s a list of our favourite books and other resources about the state of water in our world and the way it intersects with our politics, economics and societies.

Community-driven change brings water security in Tonga

Eua Island is home to many of the Kingdom of Tonga’s natural resources. Recently, climate change and natural disasters have caused significant water supply challenges, but an IFAD-supported project – made possible by the islanders’ incredible community spirit – is working to change that.

The Greenthumb Youth Group casts their nets

The Greenthumb Youth Group hadn’t had much luck with traditional farming. But thanks to a grant to set up an aquaponics venture – combining crop farming and fish farming – their success is making waves all along the value chain.

Revitalizing the practice of shifting cultivation: A conversation with Dr Dhrupad Choudhury

Shifting cultivation is an indigenous food system practiced by millions of people across south and south-east Asia. A new resource book authored by Dr Dhrupad Choudhury, in collaboration with ICIMOD, is designed to guide policymakers and development professionals in sustainably transforming this practice.

Rural Youth Innovation Award honours youth leaders fighting COVID-19

IFAD believes in the tremendous innovative capacity of rural youth – and we take seriously our responsibility to support young people in their constant search for change and innovation. That’s why this year’s Rural Youth Innovation Award in Latin America and the Caribbean, a project financed by the China-IFAD SSTC Facility, focused on initiatives led by young people fighting the pandemic.

How small-scale producers can leverage the growing livestock market

With global production and consumption of meat projected to rise, livestock rearing is becoming an increasingly important income source for many small-scale producers. Recently, livestock farmers from around the world have been learning from each other via the SSTC framework.

How South-South and Triangular Cooperation is transforming coconut cultivation and processing in Viet Nam

All businesses, irrespective of their size, location, products, and services, depend on weather and climate. Finding and sharing solutions to climate-related challenges is at the centre of South-South and Triangular Cooperation.

Creating smoke-free kitchens in Nepal through Indigenous community empowerment

EcoHimal Nepal is a national non-government organization that works with rural mountain communities. They developed a project with NELHOS, another local organization funded by IFAD, in Rukuma and Chepuwa villages of Bhotkhola Rural municipality to develop ‘’smoke-free kitchens’’.

In Rwanda, public-private partnerships benefit small-scale cassava farmers

Cassava is one of Rwanda’s most important staple crops, but market access remains a challenge. The Ingabo Syndicate, an organization of cooperatives, has been helping its cassava producers find markets for over two decades – most recently, through public-private partnerships.

2021 Agrobiodiversity Innovation Challenge

Innovators who aim to mainstream agrobiodiversity solutions into the agri-food sector are welcome to submit applications to the Agrobiodiversity Innovation Challenge.

It’s time to think small

Small-scale farmers and the rural poor have a crucial role to play in the restoration of ecosystems and the conservation of natural resources.

Annual report 2020: 123 million rural people reached as IFAD steps up fight against hunger, poverty and exclusion

As the COVID-19 pandemic raged around the world pushing millions more people into hunger and poverty, IFAD increased its support for the most vulnerable and marginalized people, according to the IFAD Annual Report 2020 released today.

El proyecto Puentes fomentará los vínculos entre gastronomía y agricultura familiar para crear empleo y oportunidades económicas para los jóvenes de las zonas rurales y peri-urbanas de Bolivia, Colombia y Honduras

El proyecto Puentes/Rural For Young People, que creará empleo y oportunidades económicas para casi 5.000 jóvenes de entre 16 y 35 años de las zonas rurales y peri-urbanas de Bolivia, Colombia y Honduras, echó a andar ayer tras su lanzamiento virtual.

Responding to the challenges of a year like no other: IFAD’s 2020 Annual Report

IFAD’s Annual Report provides a concise, compelling and interactive discussion of how we addressed the challenges of the last year.

New horizons for the Ingobor Youth Group

Meet Ingobor, a group of 20 former bus drivers and conductors who pooled their resources and established a successful dairy business.

IFAD and partners to announce upcoming coalition to support public development banks’ financing of sustainable and equitable food systems

Creating sustainable and equitable food systems that benefit the world’s most vulnerable people will require substantial investments – by some estimates as much as US$350 billion per year over the next decade.

How can International Financial Institutions invest to ‘’build back better’’?

Given the already-high levels of poverty and vulnerability faced by small-scale rural producers, the pandemic has hit them and their families particularly hard. So, what should be the priorities for organisations, like IFAD, in the coming years?  

Bold actions for gender equality and women’s empowerment in food systems

What does a gender just and equitable food system practically look like? A just and equitable food system is one in which women’s roles change from being invisible to being visible.

Putting rural small-scale producers at the centre of food systems’ transformation – join IFAD during the Food Systems pre-Summit (26-28 July 2021)

To achieve a future where every person has access to affordable and healthy food, where food production protects the environment and biodiversity, and where the people who produce our food are paid decently for their labour, food systems must radically change, and the needs of rural people must be at the centre.

Spanish filmmaker wins first IFAD COPEAM Award at Sicilymovie - Festival del Cinema di Agrigento

“Beyond the Glacier” – a short documentary which addresses the impact of climate change and human activity on fishing communities in Kazakhstan - has taken a top prize at the Sicilymovie, with Spanish director David Rodríguez Muñiz receiving the first 2021 IFAD COPEAM Film Award today.

Food systems that ignore the needs of poor rural people are doomed to fail, warns IFAD President ahead of Food Systems pre-Summit

If we ignore the challenges and needs of rural people in the world’s poorest countries, our attempts to create more equitable and sustainable food systems are doomed to fail, said the President of IFAD ahead of the UN Food Systems pre-Summit that begins in Rome on Monday.

Towards the Future of Food Systems – Episode 22

We begin this month’s episode with an update from IFAD’s Associate Vice-President Donal Brown on IFAD’s preparations for the UN Food Systems Summit. He also gives us the latest on the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on farmers around the world.

IFAD and China launch project to revitalize the rural economy in Hunan

IFAD and the People’s Republic of China are launching the Hunan Rural Revitalization Demonstration Project (H2RDP) today to increase profitability of specialized agricultural production and increase economic vitality in targeted rural areas of Hunan province – and to support vulnerable rural households to boost their livelihoods and resilience.

A new strategic opportunities programme to strengthen the partnership between Côte d’Ivoire and IFAD

IFAD and the Government of Côte d’Ivoire held a workshop in Abidjan on 15 July 2021 to present the new strategic opportunities programme for Côte d’Ivoire for the period 2020–2025 to all stakeholders involved in agricultural and rural development.

Three ways to harvest water in Brazil’s sertão

For centuries, people living in Brazil’s semi-arid region have struggled with a lack of water. But over the last decades, thanks to support from IFAD and other development actors, these communities are squeezing a few more drops of water from Mother Nature.

Third round of National Call for Proposals (Morocco): Supporting remittances in times of crisis in Africa

The Financing Facility for Remittances (FFR) of IFAD is pleased to announce the third round of National Calls for Proposals (Morocco) 2021: supporting remittances in times of crisis in Africa.

Strengthening food systems in Pakistan

The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2021 reported that more than half of the world’s undernourished are found in Asia (418 million). In Pakistan, Covid-19 has exposed vulnerabilities and inadequacies making nutrition a more complex challenge now.    

The potential and unknowns of gender transformative approaches

With less than a decade left to meet the Sustainable Development Goals, the sobering current global trajectory is one in which it will take roughly 170 years to achieve gender equality. The current global pandemic has both made gender inequalities more visible and worsened them, including in food systems.

IFAD’s new investment programme to boost private funding of rural businesses and small-scale farmers

Rural businesses, which are so vital for transforming our food systems, will get a much needed boost from an ambitious new financing programme launched today by IFAD.

UN report: Pandemic year marked by spike in world hunger

There was a dramatic worsening of world hunger in 2020, the United Nations said today – much of it likely related to the fallout of COVID-19. While the pandemic’s impact has yet to be fully mapped, a multi-agency report estimates that around a tenth of the global population – up to 811 million people – were undernourished last year.

Call for proposals: Digital advisory services to support accelerated rural transformation

This call for proposals is to select a recipient or consortium of recipients to receive a three-year IFAD grant financing to implement the project: Digital Advisory Services to Support Accelerated Rural Transformation for a total amount of up to US$2 million.

Finalists announced for first ever IFAD COPEAM Film Award

Climate change and ecosystem health will dominate Sicily’s big screen this summer, with today’s announcement of three finalists in the first-ever IFAD COPEAM Film Award at the Sicily Movie Festival del cinema di Agrigento.

IFAD’s Rural Youth Innovation Award recognizes the key role that young people play in overcoming the impact of COVID-19 on rural communities

IFAD highlighted the value of innovative youth-led intiatives in helping the region’s rural communities overcome the effects of COVID-19 with the second edition of its Rural Youth Innovation Award.

Putting food and agriculture at the heart of the global biodiversity framework

Despite standing to suffer immensely from the decline of biodiversity, agriculture is the lead driver of biodiversity loss, primarily through conversion and fragmentation of habitat and unsustainable intensification.

Tanzanian small-scale farmers receive support to improve food security in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic

IFAD will provide funding to assist 6,240 vulnerable small-scale farmers in rural Tanzania impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Seeing the invisible, doing the impossible: A young Nigerian entrepreneur’s journey to success

Dorothy Chia Vandefan is nothing if not insightful. She describes herself as a serious-minded agricultural entrepreneur who can create opportunities where there seem to be none – and she’s right.

Developing Uganda's small and medium-sized agricultural businesses

Gladys Ndagile has been a poultry farmer for many years, but it was only when she connected with a local egg processing business that she finally made a profit from her eggs.

IFAD and KSrelief agree to jointly tackle hunger and malnutrition in world’s most vulnerable countries

IFAD and the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and ‎Relief Centre (KSrelief) today agreed to join forces to help ensure sustainable access to nutritious food.

Second Edition of the IFAD Latin American and Caribbean Rural Youth Innovation Award

IFAD is to hold the Second Edition of the Rural Youth Innovation Award for Latin America and the Caribbean on Thursday, 8 July at the Bogota’s EAN University.

A decade of IFAD’s inclusive rural finance programmes points to an innovative and catalytic future

The number and variety of financial services accessible to the rural poor continues to grow. A recently completed stocktake of IFAD’s rural finance programmes has identified a number of successes, plus some opportunities for further innovation.

Transforming rural agriculture through technology and innovation

Despite the African continent holding the world’s most arable land and the agricultural sector employing over half of the population, Africa is still struggling with food production and food insecurity.

IFAD and Guinea to help rural populations recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic

IFAD will provide the Republic of Guinea with a grant to improve the resilience of more than 2,123 poor farming households trying to cope with the COVID-19 pandemic, by ensuring rapid access to inputs, information, markets and cash.

G20 recognizes importance of Public Development Bank financing to tackle rural poverty and hunger, and leadership of IFAD

In the first-ever joint declaration by foreign affairs and development ministers, G20 countries today recognised the vital role Public Development Banks (PDBs) can play in filling the financing gap to sustainably tackle rural hunger and poverty, and the leadership of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) in bringing them together to strengthen their long-term investments in food and agriculture.

Promoting renewable energy technologies for small-scale farmers in Cambodia

Renewable energy technologies are an increasingly important part of small-scale agriculture. IFAD’s S-RET project is bringing these technologies to farmers throughout Cambodia – and it’s recently been selected as a GEF Global Good Practice Project.

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