#IFADGC High-level panel: From words to actions: Creating a sustainable future for smallholder farmers

Participative Government strategies as well as the technical & financial support of International Organisations, Civil Society and the Private Sector can help smallholder farmers to increase their productivity in a sustainable way.

Naga Munchetty has hosted this high level panel composed of
- H. E. Akinwumi Ayo Adesina, Minister of Agriculture & Rural Development and Vice-President (Policy and Partnerships) for the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA),
- H. E. Mehmet Mehdi Eker, Minister of Food, Agriculture & Livestock, Turkey;
- H. E. Nemesia Achacollo Tola, Minister of Rural & Territorial Development Agriculture of Bolivia, and
- Carlos Seré, Chief Development Strategist, IFAD.

The panellists have pointed out that the responsibility and accountability of governments to ensure the enabling environment by providing the necessary infrastructure such as research, physical access to markets and technical support services including capacity building to smallholder farmers in rural areas is essential. Farmers and their farmers’ organisations are the main focus and shall be directly involved in the definition of agricultural policies.

Long-term sustainable development of agriculture can only be obtained by an efficient cooperation of Governments, international organisations, civil society and the private sector. International organisations such as FAO and IFAD have the technical know-how on agriculture related issues, whereas the private sector can contribute to providing services (index-based weather insurances...) and high-quality inputs (fertilisers, high-quality seeds...). The civil society can also help to support local communities in strengthening their capacities to participate in policy dialogue.

Sustainable agriculture needs to internalise climate change. In light of Rio plus 20 farmers need to be aware of the climate change so that they can adapt to this new reality to ensure food security for their families as well as non-farm consumers in the long run.

In order to eradicate extreme poverty and hunger (MDG 1), Governments have to decide and commit to fight food insecurity so that international organisations can assist in providing technical support and research, the civil society can help strengthen rural communities and the private sector is able to invest and provide high-quality inputs.