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Opinion Pieces Recognize World Food Day, Highlight Efforts To Improve Smallholder Agriculture

National Geographic: Opinion: We Can End Hunger. Here’s How
José Graziano da Silva, director general of the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization

“…We need to integrate [social protection programs] with pro-poor agricultural investment programs to derive more virtuous synergies [to eradicate hunger by 2030]. Political commitment, partnerships, and adequate funding are key to realizing this vision. Policies and plans for rural development, poverty reduction, food security, and nutrition need to promote pro-poor investments and social protection to fight poverty and hunger, together with a broader set of interventions, notably in health and education. We know what to do. We have the tools. Now we’ve made the pledge. So we must be the zero hunger generation” (10/16).

Christian Science Monitor: On World Food Day, farmers should come first
David Hong, global senior policy analyst at the One Acre Fund

“…Agriculture is the common thread running through nine of the 17 [Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)], from hunger and poverty to health, education, and the environment. Because smallholder farmers comprise the largest group of people living in poverty, no sector is more vital to achieving the global goals than agriculture. Without farm income, health interventions and access to education will fall flat. And increases in agricultural productivity are key to reducing water use, mitigating climate change, and growing rural economies. … To maximize the impact of our global efforts to achieve the SDGs, the world must prioritize investments in smallholder farmers” (10/16).

The Guardian: Beating climate change is key to making nutritious food needed to beat hunger
Neven Mimica, E.U. commissioner for international cooperation and development, and Phil Hogan, E.U. commissioner for agriculture

“…Ensuring greater food production alone is not enough. Since undernutrition is the principal cause of death for more than three million children each year, we need not just more food but also affordable, safe, and nutritious food. Climate change is a key factor to be addressed, in Paris and beyond. There is strong scientific evidence that changing temperatures and rainfall patterns have a significant impact on crops. The E.U. actively promotes techniques that can reinforce the sustainability and productivity of farming…” (10/19).

The Hill: Investing in women farmers is key to zero hunger
Bahati Muriga, smallholder farmer from the Mwanza region of northern Tanzania and winner of the Tanzanian Female Food Heroes television competition

“…Last week, I and Oxfam staff met with key legislators about the importance of passing the Global Food Security Act of 2015. The act builds on the success of the Feed the Future initiative, a program that works to transform lives by partnering with countries to develop their agriculture sectors and break the cycle of poverty and hunger. … It’s important we urge governments to invest in small-scale women farmers, so that they can have better access to education, seeds, and the capital necessary to increase healthy food production. … Legislation to make food security and nutrition a permanent priority is crucial to protecting the needs and interests of small-holder farmers…” (10/16).

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