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Food sovereignty: the urgent need to make all agricultures progress

Africa, agriculture

4 Oct 2022

The current crises are once again revealing the major issues of food sovereignty and agricultural development in the world. The agricultural and food sectors are being hit hard by the rising prices of food and agricultural inputs. This rise has been accelerated by the war in Ukraine.

The current crisis is not a crisis of production but a crisis of availability. We lack grain, we lack fertiliser, we lack local and sustainable production all over the world; the African continent is the first to be affected.

International aid can partially compensate for these difficulties, but this is tantamount to healing wounds that other crises, other wars and other often silent battles will reopen. In order to find a lasting solution to the issue of food sovereignty, we must make all forms of agriculture progress.

Food Sovereignty: Advancing all forms of agriculture

More than food aid, to ensure food sovereignty in the world, and particularly in Africa, we need to make all forms of agriculture progress, in terms of:

  • Agricultural techniques:¬†to improve yields, when we know how terribly low they often are in Africa;
  • Integrated agricultural sectors:¬†as we see local production being used in other countries, by other actors, without any economic benefits for the producers themselves;
  • Access to finance:¬†to be able to implement these projects, allow local actors to undertake and succeed;
  • Environment:¬†to stop destroying the land that feeds us, but rather to regenerate it through regenerative agriculture programmes;
  • Considerations for the peasant condition:¬†considerations carried by the populations, governments, institutions, so that our young people want to take up these agricultural challenges. Our lives depend on the capacity of our agriculture to produce quality food. Food that is respected, protected, valued and better consumed.
  • Technology:¬†to enable adaptation to a climate that is less and less conducive to agriculture. Due to global warming, competition for water, and extreme weather conditions that are increasingly prevalent in all regions of the world.

Seizing opportunities

In this time of crisis, we must know how to transform threats into opportunities. In order to thoroughly transform the agricultural and food sectors:

Food sovereignty is a major and current challenge. No government will be forgiven if it does not implement a real policy of local agricultural and agri-food production.

The fight against global warming implies carbon sequestration. At a a level of carbon sequestration that only land and forests (with the oceans) can achieve in terms of volume and temporality (now and for a long time).

The emergence of new technologies and techniques is bringing about radical transformations in production practices and systems.

A long-term commitment at every moment

Agricultural transitions do not happen overnight. Changes require time for adaptation, appropriation and consolidation for the sectors to function successfully.

We will only succeed in solving the issues of food sovereignty and agricultural development if we work now, at every moment, and over time. This is the meaning of the commitment of Apexagri, of our teams, of our experts and of the ecosystem of actors such as the Alpha coalition or the Fondation FARM in which we actively participate.