The High-Level Consultation on Hunger, Food Security and Nutrition (HFSN) in the Post-2015 Development Agenda took place on 4 April 2013 in Madrid, Spain. This final meeting of the Post-2015 Thematic Consultation on HFSN gathered representatives of UN Member States, non-governmental organizations, civil society and the private sector to discuss a vision for, and identify priority areas and building blocks related to, food security and nutrition in the post-2015 development agenda. The meeting was part of one of several global thematic consultations that were convened to inform the design of the post-2015 development agenda. The HFSN Consultation was co-led by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World Food Programme (WFP), and co-hosted by the Governments of Spain and Colombia. During the meeting, participants heard presentations on the process of the global consultation thus far, and participated in three sessions on: developing a comprehensive vision; building blocks for a global agenda on hunger, food security and nutrition; and governance, accountability and means of implementation of a possible agenda. The meeting concluded with an official hand-over of the Synthesis Report of the Global Consultation on HFSN to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, and final remarks by Ban and the Mariano Rajoy, Prime Minister of Spain.
A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE GLOBAL CONSULTATIONS IN THE POST-2015 DEVELOPMENT AGENDA
At the High-level Plenary Meeting of the 65th Session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA) on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), held in New York in September 2010, governments called for accelerating progress towards achieving the MDGs, and for considering ways to advance the UN development agenda beyond 2015. In response, the UN undertook several initiatives aimed at developing this agenda, including: setting up a UN System Task Team on the Post-2015 UN Development Agenda (UNTT); launching a High-level Panel of Eminent Persons on the Post-2015 Development Agenda (HLP); appointing a Special Advisor on Post-2015 Development Planning; and launching national and global thematic consultations.
In addition to the above, other processes that will feed into the post-2015 discussions include: the work of the Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals (OWG), a 30-member group mandated by the outcome document of the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD or Rio+20) to prepare a proposal on sustainable development goals (SDGs) for consideration by the UNGA at its 68th session; regional consultations by the Regional Economic Commissions, which will result in a report on regional perspectives on the post-2015 development agenda; inputs from the Sustainable Development Solutions Network, set up by the UN Secretary-General in August 2012 to support global problem solving in ten critical areas of sustainable development; and input from businesses and the private sector through the UN Global Compact.
In order to ensure coherence across these different work streams, an informal senior coordination group of four Assistant Secretary-Generals (ASGs) was established, which includes the ASG for Economic Development at the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA), ASG for Development Policy at the UN Development Programme (UNDP), ASG for Policy and Programme at UN Women, and the Special Advisor on Post-2015 Development Planning. A “One Secretariat” has also been established to facilitate coordination and coherence across the work streams.
UN System Task Team: UNTT, which includes over 60 UN entities and agencies and other international organizations, was set up to assess ongoing efforts within the UN system, consult all relevant stakeholders and define a system-wide vision and roadmap to support deliberations on the post-2015 development agenda. UNTT presented its report “Realizing the Future We Want for All” in June 2012, which called for an integrated policy approach to ensure inclusive economic development, social progress and environmental sustainability, and for a development agenda that responds to the public’s aspiration for a world free of want and fear. The report, which recommended that the post-2015 vision be built on the principles of human rights, equality and sustainability, will serve as a reference for additional, broad and inclusive consultations on the post-2015 development agenda.
UNTT, which is co-chaired by DESA and UNDP, will provide technical support to the OWG. It also aims to support the multi-stakeholder consultations being led by Member States on the post-2015 development agenda by providing analytical inputs, expertise and outreach.
High-Level Panel of Eminent Persons on the Post-2015 Development Agenda: The UN Secretary-General launched the HLP in June 2012, and appointed President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono of Indonesia, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf of Liberia and Prime Minister David Cameron of the United Kingdom as co-chairs. The HLP includes leaders from civil society, the private sector and governments. The Panel, which reports to the UN Secretary-General and is not an intergovernmental process, is expected to publish its report in May 2013, outlining its vision and recommendations on a post-2015 global development agenda. This report will feed into the Secretary-General’s report to Member States at the UN’s Special Event to Follow-up on Efforts Made Towards Achieving the MDGs in September 2013.
Special Advisor on Post-2015 Development Planning: In June 2012, Amina J. Mohammed of Nigeria was appointed as ASG and Special Advisor on Post-2015 Development Planning to coordinate, on behalf of the UN Secretary-General, the process of developing and building consensus among Member States, UN actors and key external actors. Mohammed also serves as ex-officio member on the HLP, represents the Secretary-General in the post-2015 debate and advises him on related matters.
National and Global Thematic Consultations: The UN Development Group (UNDG) initiated national and global thematic consultations on the post-2015 development agenda aimed at bringing together a broad range of stakeholders to review progress on the MDGs and to discuss options for a new framework. The national consultations are taking place online and offline in more than 70 developing and developed countries, with national stakeholders exchanging information and providing their inputs for a shared global vision of “The Future We Want.”
At the global level, the UNDG initiated 11 multi-stakeholder thematic consultations on: hunger, nutrition and food security; energy; addressing inequalities; governance; health; population dynamics; conflict, violence and disasters; education; environmental sustainability; and water, including on water resources management, wastewater management, and water quality.
Each thematic consultation is co-convened by two or more UN agencies with support from governments, working together with representatives from civil society, the private sector and academia. The consultations, which seek online contributions at the “World We Want 2015” website, aim to explore the role each theme could play in a new framework, the various ways in which they can best be addressed, and the linkages among them. A high-level meeting is being held for each thematic area, to consider the results and recommendations of the consultations.
In addition, UNDP, the UN Millennium Campaign, the Overseas Development Institute and the World Wide Web Foundation developed and are facilitating an options survey called “MY World” that allows citizens to vote online and offline for issues that they believe would make the most difference to their lives. This survey aims to gather public opinions on development priorities.
Global Consultation on Hunger, Food Security and Nutrition: The thematic consultation on hunger, food security and nutrition consisted of three phases during which the views of a wide range of actors were collected on lessons learned from the MDGs, as well as on the post-2015 development agenda: an online discussion, moderated by the Global Forum on Food Security and Nutrition; a consultation of the Committee on World Food Security (CFS) stakeholders, which refined emerging issues from the online discussions; and the High-Level Consultation held in Madrid on 4 April 2013, which is summarized in this report.
Participants in the online discussion called for prioritizing food security and nutrition in the next set of development goals, ambitious objectives, and a stronger, improved framework to guide actions based on key issues, including: increasing agricultural resilience to climate change and economic shocks; promoting good governance, reducing inequality and emphasizing rights-based approaches; accelerating progress in eradicating hunger and malnutrition, with an explicit emphasis on gender equality; and integrating food-based responses with public health interventions at all levels.
The informal consultation of the CFS, which took place in Rome on 11 February 2013, emphasized ensuring a new development framework is concise and easily understood, inclusive, linked to practical action and comprehensive. As drivers of the new development framework, participants urged: political commitment and good governance at all levels; the importance of nutrition; sustainable increases in food production; building sustainable food systems; and investing in the protection of the most vulnerable.
REPORT OF THE HIGH-LEVEL CONSULTATION ON HUNGER,
FOOD SECURITY AND NUTRITION IN THE POST-2015 DEVELOPMENT AGENDA
WELCOME REMARKS AND INTRODUCTION
Gonzalo Robles, Secretary-General for International Development Cooperation, Spain, welcomed participants and outlined the agenda for the day.
José Manuel García-Margallo, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Spain, welcomed participants and thanked the Governments of Colombia and Spain for hosting the meeting. He said the fact that, in 2013, 850 million people still go to bed hungry and that 165 million children are chronically malnourished was unacceptable. He indicated that in this globalized era, “it is trite to say that politics alone can offer the leadership necessary to address global development challenges,” adding that the size of multinational companies dictates that they must be meaningfully included in these discussions.
Patti Londoño, Vice-Minister of Multilateral Affairs, Colombia, invited the international community to build on the momentum of the MDGs and move forward ambitiously. She called food security fundamental to a holistic post-2015 development agenda, noting it is closely linked to infrastructure, water, energy, consumption and production. She urged: developing precise and measurable criteria and universal commitments; making targets irreversible and based on lasting, long-term policies; and developing sustainable goals that are equitable within and among countries, and transcend generations.
Miguel Ángel Arias Cañete, Minister of Agriculture, Spain, said hunger and malnutrition is the largest epidemic facing humanity, and lamented that it remains a predominantly politically fueled crisis. Stressing the need for a logistics component to any target, he mentioned FAO’s work on food waste, indicating that reducing global waste by half would mean radical progress on hunger and malnutrition in the most vulnerable populations. He urged the international community to support the use of a wider variety of crops to help feed the world, lamenting that of the thousands of cultivatable crops that exist, only seven provide 90% of the world’s food production.
GENERAL PRESENTATION OF THE POST-2015 GLOBAL CONSULTATION PROCESS
José Graziano da Silva, FAO Director-General, stressed the importance of eradicating hunger and extreme poverty in order for further goals to succeed. He applauded progress achieved so far, and outlined lessons, including: changing perceptions of poverty and hunger; addressing food distribution and access; addressing rural destitution; and transforming farming polices and income transfer programmes. On the challenges of addressing food security and nutrition, he called for better governance, overcoming lack of synergies and communication, and highlighting food security and nutrition among the many issues vying for political attention.
Amir Abdulla, WFP Deputy Executive Director, lamented the persistence of 900 million chronically undernourished people and 3.5 million child deaths per annum despite investments in sustainable agriculture and support to small-scale farmers, and urged focusing on the millions of people who are unable to communicate their post-2015 needs. Underscoring gender equity as a key driver in breaking the cycle of hunger and poverty, Abdulla called for recognizing lifecycle approaches and addressing intergenerational issues, and emphasized the importance of nutrition during the first 1,000 days of a child’s life. He stressed the links between resilience to climate change and economic shocks, and food security and nutrition, and urged a dual approach that also addresses health, education and access to safe drinking water through integrated actions.
Kanayo Nwanze, President, International Fund for Agricultural Development, recalled that of the almost two billion people living on less than a dollar a day, 70% are living mainly as subsistence farmers in rural areas. He emphasized the role of agriculture in reducing poverty, lamenting that agricultural expenditures have declined in most countries. Warning of the challenge of producing food for nine billion people in the near future, he underscored the importance of putting people at the center of addressing global food security and nutrition
PRESENTATION OF THE RESULTS OF THE THEMATIC CONSULTATION
Yaya Olaniran, Chair, CFS, said he was speaking on behalf of the billions of people who need the international community’s help to reach their full potential. He recalled that the multi-stakeholder online consultation indicated that only gender-equal, inclusive governance can foster fair, sustainable growth and achieve food security. He added that small producers, particularly women, must be included in policy development processes. In closing, Olaniran lamented that, because “politicians are often both lawmakers and law breakers,” increased peer pressure amongst presidents and prime ministers, as well as frank conversations among other leaders about the unacceptability of food security and its often political nature, is critical.
AN ISSUE OF JUSTICE: THE RIGHT TO FOOD IN A CLIMATE CONSTRAINED WORLD
Mary Robinson, President, Mary Robinson Foundation -Climate Justice, lamented the little progress made in recent decades to reduce malnutrition and hunger despite global efforts, and called for “honesty about our failures and ratcheting up leadership.” She emphasized the need to listen to the voiceless millions when developing a post-2015 development agenda, and transforming human rights and empowerment beyond rhetoric. Sharing experiences from Africa, Robinson stressed growth in dignity and confidence as by-products of food security and education, and called for linkages across disciplines.
FIRST SESSION: COMPREHENSIVE VISION
David Nabarro, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Food Security and Nutrition, facilitated the three discussion sessions, and urged participants to suggest goals that are ambitious yet precise, universal and irreversible, and that embrace complexity, while being achievable and based on commitments. He encouraged participants to use this high-level meeting to establish the beginning of a new global discourse on food security and nutrition.
Nadine Heredia, First Lady of Peru, declared that the international community needs to be more decisive, radical and efficient in its efforts to address food security and nutrition. She recounted that Peru’s advances on these issues have been based on recognizing that hunger has multiple causes, and stressed the need, above all, for improved education. Heredia stated that progress is not possible without adequate political will and appropriate financing.
Margaret Chan, Director-General, World Health Organization (WHO), pledged the WHO’s support of the background document prepared for the meeting entitled “Food Security and Nutrition for All: A Vision and Building Blocks for a Global Agenda,” but submitted that any goal should deal with food security and nutrition not separately but together, as the former is about quantity and the latter about quality. She also stressed that the still new, but increasingly important, issue of over-nutrition should be incorporated into the discussion. Chan noted that the realization of any goals will depend on both increasing political dedication and policy coherence. She said partner institutions, including the UN, must do more to work cohesively with development partners and one another and concluded by saying that the private sector must reform to focus on production of healthy, safe and affordable food.
Mahmoud Mohieldin, the World Bank President’s Special Envoy on MDGs, said goals must be ambitious enough to spur action, transformative for the poor, mutually reinforcing and complimentary. On financing, which he indicated would be key to any goal, Mohieldin lamented that “not much should be expected from official development assistance (ODA) based on current donor government spending.” He further cautioned that many indicators and numbers used to frame the current debate are rough estimates because even basic information is often lacking for many countries. He closed by noting that, although food security is required to meet many other development goals, food price volatility should be considered the “new normal,” requiring new safety nets, such as insurance for small producers.
In the ensuing discussion, one participant noted the importance of prioritizing small producers and including them in policymaking processes, and considering the importance of culture in food security. Another said nutrition should be understood as a right; suggested establishing urgent goals for 2020 or 2025; and indicated that sustainable public funding is required in addition to private sector financing. Other issues raised by participants during the discussion related to: the call for a vision that is easy to communicate and to remember; the need to implement and enforce current policies to quickly improve food security; sovereignty over seeds, land and water for small producers and smallholders; and the need for any new framework to support small investors, the main providers of finance to small farmers. One participant said the background document requires a clear definition of what is meant by the “right” to “safe” food, while another urged focusing on children and youth in the document.
SECOND SESSION: BUILDING BLOCKS FOR A GLOBAL AGENDA
Agnes Kalibata, Minister of Agriculture and Animal Resources, Rwanda, explored how her country made progress on the MDGs despite its fragile situation. She said allocating a significant percentage of the government budget to agriculture, 10% in Rwanda’s case, was key, as was “owning the MDGs” and looking for home-grown solutions. On concrete suggestions for goals, she suggested: investing directly in farmers; equipping vulnerable people with resiliency tools; and framing governance not as politics but as people empowerment.
Esther Penunia, Asian Farmers Association, said that, after comparing the objectives outlined in the background document to those of smallholder associations, she suggested changes to the document to highlight that not only rights to land must be assured, but also access to fisheries and economic opportunities. She said that strengthening processes of land rights and registration, and rights over seeds are integral to reducing food insecurity. In closing, she said the background document should not to strive for all “stakeholders to concur with the rules” of the market as it is currently written, but rather that fair rules for small producers should be established.
In the ensuing discussion, one participant stressed the need for institutionally responsive global governance, lamented lack of participation of the poor in the process, and stated that a comprehensive vision should “plug the poverty holes” by going beyond poverty alleviation and improving agricultural sustainability. Another participant emphasized the critical role of agricultural growth, strengthening markets and access to them, creative distribution of resources, and the role of farmer innovation, while establishing an agenda that is evidence-based. One participant proposed establishing two SDGs on eradicating hunger and malnutrition, and transforming agricultural practices. She also emphasized the need for holistic, site-specific sustainable agricultural intensification, calling for a “mosaic of solutions,” and increasing “knowledge per hectare” instead of productivity.
THIRD SESSION: GOVERNANCE, ACCOUNTABILITY AND MEANS OF IMPLEMENTATION
Sharon Dijksma, Minister of Agriculture, the Netherlands, highlighted challenges related to food security and nutrition are functions of poverty, and any goals must be based on inclusive economic growth and increased agricultural investment, a strong emphasis on the private sector to encourage entrepreneurship and innovative solutions, and climate-smart agriculture.
Lapodini Marc Atouga, Commissioner for Agriculture, Environment and Water Resources, Economic Community of West African States, lamented the persistent nature of food insecurity, and said poor governance is its root cause. He called for establishing a framework that fosters political accountability for food security and appropriate structures for the poor to pressure their governments.
In the ensuing discussion, one participant requested that governments offer smallholders access to agricultural processing technologies. A private sector representative suggested that investment in agriculture be “farmer-centered, innovation-led and knowledge-based.” Another said that a single set of goals must emerge from the post-2015 and Rio+20 processes, and called for governance systems that protect against land-grabbing. One participant interjected that business people, financiers and other stakeholders should have a common roof under which they can discuss food security issues, noting that most governments also lack such a forum domestically.
Participants also called for: a global food governance system that strengthens coordination between major institutions and ensures their accountability and inclusiveness; and establishing baselines before measuring progress, recalling that governments often require assistance in this regard. Warning that food security is not only about the availability of local food resources, a participant stressed the need for infrastructure that encourages international trade, and, lamenting existing barriers to agricultural commerce, called for exerting pressure on politicians to break down the barriers through policy reform.
Another contributor highlighted that specific “demands” of the private sector are required, stressing that leaving room for speculation or interpretation on the meaning of “private sector involvement” is not desirable. Another noted the centrality of political power to this discussion and the need for measurable goals and indicators to assure accountability of politicians. Another interlocutor suggested refocusing the discussion away from food availability and onto food access, and stressed that food security governance is a multi-sectoral affair. A final participant said that, while international governance is important, national governments need to better assess their agricultural sectors in order to understand what needs improvement and whether improvements are indeed taking place over time.
Facilitator Nabarro then asked participants to consider whether political accountability regarding food security is absent in some countries because an explicit MDG on this issue does not exist.
SYNTHESIS OF THE PROCESS
Summarizing the Joint Chairs Synthesis Report of the High-Level Consultation on Hunger, Food Security and Nutrition in the Post-2015 Development Agenda, Jesús Gracia Aldaz, Secretary of State for International Cooperation and Latin America, Spain, presented on the vision of participants regarding ending hunger, food insecurity and malnutrition in a sustainable manner by 2025. He stressed the achievability of this vision is predicated upon bold and urgent government action as part of governments’ moral and political obligations.
On pathways to achieving this vision, and emphasizing the complexity and multi-dimensionality of the problem, he noted that building blocks for change are cross-sectoral, complementary and synergistic, and that no one-size-fits-all solution exists. He said these building blocks include: sustainable and resilient food production and consumption requiring improved access to more nutritious diets, improved local food availability, efficient food distribution systems, and reduced waste and loss; overcoming challenges of over- and under-nutrition to provide “good” nutrition for all, access to safe drinking water, hygiene and sanitation, and education; agents for transformation, including small producers, family farmers, indigenous peoples and consumers at all levels; and developing catalytic steps, including gender-equal investments, and guarantees for small farmer investment opportunities and market access.
On ensuring the realization of the vision, Aldaz urged a new brand of “enlightened partnerships,” with shared responsibility, which incorporates: voices of vulnerable groups; and greater government commitment, leadership, goal ownership, private sector engagement and collaboration among UN partners. In closing, he warned of the cost of inaction, and said investing in the future requires urgent and decisive action, and a radical shift away from business-as-usual and charity, and towards universal rights to secure food and nutrition for all.
THE WAY FORWARD: THE FUTURE AGENDA
UNDP Administrator Helen Clark, speaking as UNDG Chair, emphasized the link between this discussion and the entire post-2015 process, applauding the unprecedented consultations at the global level. She indicated the critical importance of distilling the contents of the various consultations, and underscored the significance of food security and nutrition in drawing participants together. Clark said it was critical to merge the development and environmental discussions into one track.
Amina J. Mohammed, Special Adviser on Post-2015 Development Planning, welcomed the diversity of participants in the process, which she said was critical for building a new framework, and suggested using the lessons learned from any MDGs that could not be achieved in building new goals. While emphasizing the need for a smooth transition towards a new framework, she nonetheless underscored the challenge and commitment required in moving from a purely social agenda to a development agenda that integrates economic, environmental and social aspects. Calling for greater emphasis on conflict and violence resolution, and job creation, particularly for youth, she urged careful consideration of the “we” in the “World We Want.”
FINAL CEREMONY: HAND OVER OF THE RESULT OF THE GLOBAL CONSULTATION ON HFSN TO THE UN SECRETARY-GENERAL: THE WAY FORWARD FOR THE FUTURE WE WANT FOR ALL
Gonzalo Robles, Secretary-General for International Development Cooperation, Spain, introduced the speakers.
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, stating he was once a hungry child of war himself, stressed that the positive experience of the Republic of Korea following the Korean War indicates that global hunger and food security goals are achievable within a lifetime. He noted that 5 April 2013 marks 1,000 days until the deadline for achieving the MDGs. He recalled that “while much progress has been made, the tide of progress has yet to lift all boats,” and noted that in coming years, food systems will face the additional challenges of climate change. Ban called for improved nutrition and access to safe food for women and children, including via social safety nets. In closing, he urged participants to work with the UN system in achieving the MDGs and in progressing towards the “World We Want.”
Mariano Rajoy, Spanish Prime Minister, thanked the organizers and recounted Spain’s commitment as a development partner despite the fact it has been unable to reach its ODA target of 0.7% of gross domestic product due to the financial crisis. He said our global goal should be to create a world where everyone has the opportunity to live a safe, dignified and economically fruitful life. He stressed ODA should not be seen as an act of generosity, but rather as an investment in our common global wellbeing and future, and indicated that during these difficult economic times, Spain is concentrating its development assistance where it has a national comparative advantage.
Gonzalo Robles closed the meeting at 7:13pm.
High-level Meeting on Energy and the Post-2015 Development Agenda: This High-level Meeting is part of the Global Thematic Consultation on Energy. Participants will consider the results of the online consultations and their recommendations. The meeting is expected to develop key energy recommendations and potential global energy objectives, with the aim of informing and shaping the post-2015 development agenda on energy issues. Participants will also discuss processes for engaging with key national, regional and global stakeholders on energy. The meeting will be organized by UN-Energy and the UN Secretary-General’s Sustainable Energy for All (SE4ALL) Initiative, the co-leaders of the Consultation, in partnership with the Governments of Mexico, Norway and Tanzania. date: 9 April 2013 location: Oslo, Norway www: http://www.worldwewant2015.org/energy2015
Second Session of the Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals: The second session of the UNGA OWG is scheduled for 17-19April. The session is expected to discuss MDG acceleration, lessons learned, identification of gaps and moving towards SDGs. It is also expected to consider poverty eradication, food security and nutrition, sustainable agriculture, desertification and land degradation. dates: 17-19 April 2013 location: UN Headquarters, New York contact: UN Division for Sustainable Development phone: +1-212-963-8102 fax: +1-212-963-4260 email: firstname.lastname@example.org www: http://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/index.php?menu=1549
International Conference on Food Security and Nutrition 2013: The XXXIV International Conference on Food Security and Nutrition will bring together leading academic scientists, researchers and scholars to exchange and share experiences and research results regarding all aspects of food security and nutrition, and discuss practical challenges encountered and solutions adopted. dates: 29-30 April 2013 location: Holiday Inn, Sandton, South Africa contact: World Academy of Science, Engineering and Technology phone: +27-11-282-0000 fax: +27-11-282-0007 email: email@example.com www: http://www.waset.org/conferences/2013/johannesburg/icfsn/
International Conference on Forests for Food Security and Nutrition: This meeting aims to increase understanding of the crucial role that forests, trees on farms and agroforestry systems can play in improving the food security and nutrition of rural people, especially in developing countries. It will propose ways to integrate this knowledge into policy decisions at the national and international levels. dates: 13-15 May 2013 location: FAO Headquarters, Rome contact: FAO Forestry Department phone: Call by Skype: ID: FAOForestryInformationCentre fax: +39 065-705-5514 email: firstname.lastname@example.org www: http://www.fao.org/forestry/food-security/en/
UNGA Special Event on the MDGs: This special event will follow-up on efforts made towards achieving the MDGs. It is likely to include an opening and a closing plenary meeting, and up to four high-level interactive multi-stakeholder roundtable sessions, which will focus in particular on accelerating implementation of the MDGs, as well as looking forward to the post-2015 framework. date: 25 September 2013 (tentative) location: New York www: http://bit.ly/WgW6le
International Year of Family Farming: The initiative to declare an international year of family farming was launched in 2008 by the World Rural Forum (WRF), which is composed of some 327 farmer and rural organizations from 60 countries. The 37th Session of the FAO Conference proposed that 2014 be declared the International Year of Family Farming (IYFF) with the objective of raising the profile of family farming by focusing world attention on its role in alleviating hunger and poverty, providing food security and improving livelihoods, while protecting the environment and biodiversity. Subsequently, the 66th session of the UNGA declared 2014 as the IYFF and invited FAO to facilitate its implementation. www: http://www.fao.org/agriculture/crops/core-themes/theme/spi/iyff14/en/