LOG IN
Sustainable Agriculture Initiative Platform
The global food value chain initiative for sustainable agriculture

New Push on Sustainable Agriculture - The New York Times Blog

This week the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations threw its weight behind a new push for sustainable agriculture in developing countries. While declaring that “we have no option but to further intensify crop production” to feed a growing and increasingly affluent world population, the F.A.O. nonetheless urged a broader application of techniques that, while raising yields, have also been shown to reduce inputs of water, energy and fertilizer, compared to more conventional farming approaches.

Greener techniques have already gained some momentum among farmers in some parts of the world. They include conservation agriculture, noted for minimal use of plowing; integrated pest management, an approach that minimizes the use of pesticides; and more precise and judicious use of water and fertilizer. “None of them are absolutely new,” Shivaji Pandey, head of an F.A.O. division, acknowledged in a video briefing.

What’s new is that the F.A.O. has put all these techniques together in one document and urged agricultural specialists worldwide to use it as they plan development projects, which are expected to become more ambitious amid the world’s current food crisis. The book-length document is available online and can also be ordered in hard copy at this link.

By JUSTIN GILLIS

A blog in the on-line issue of 17 Jun 2011, of The New York Times