The United Nations (UN) is working towards achieving global sustainability in agriculture and food production. The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) is a subsidiary of the UN and is tasked with meeting the 2030 Agenda. The FAO also ensures that the agricultural sector upholds the Paris Agreement in terms of reducing carbon emissions and minimising the effects of farming waste.
Agriculture needs to be more sustainable
Members of the European Union (EU) have stated that the FAO is working to maximise the potential which sustainable agriculture, forestry and fisheries offer to strike a balance between the climate change and industrial development agendas. “Our food systems must be made sustainable or, eventually, they won’t feed the world,” says FAO director-general José Graziano da Silva.
In short, the FAO will try to foster sustainable practices in the food production industry and to promote organic farming. The FAO hopes to reduce chemical use and waste amongst farmers, forestries and fisheries, as this leads to more sustainable soils and a reduced impact of the environment.
Other priorities of the FAO’s sustainable agriculture initiative
Besides making global agricultural practices more sustainable and environmentally-friendly, the FAO is also hoping to make economic growth more inclusive for all participants. This includes employing more farmworkers from rural areas which will reduce poverty and inequality at the same time.
The FAO will facilitate access to markets for small farms and family ventures so that they can sell their produce and make a living. They will address women empowerment in the industry and try to solve excessive food price volatility. South Africa is a key region in which the FAO can work alongside agricultural companies and farmers.
Regular reports will be released by the FAO and the UN on the progress made in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. Going forward, the FAO will be “working closely on issues that will determine whether we want the world of the future to be one of balance or one of fragility,” says Graziano da Silva.
Sustainable agricultural practices will ensure that the increasing global population is fed and that the impact on the environment is minimised.
Image: Joshua Oates
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