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Want to Feed Africa? Invest in Latin America.

By - Apr 23 2014

Food Security

Ours is a hungry planet. Food insecurity is a real and rampant issue.  In only 36 years food production will need to increase 100% to feed an anticipated 2 billion additional mouths on the planet.   Though it is essential that sustainable production increase everywhere to meet this demand, Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC), blessed with ample arable land and fresh water, must play a central role for seven reasons:

  1. LAC is the largest net food exporting region on the planet.
  2. LAC has a third of the world’s fresh water resources.
  3. LAC holds 28% of the world’s medium to high potential farmland.
  4. Thirty-six% of LAC’s land is within six hours travel time to a market.
  5. In just sixteen years, Latin America is projected to meet 166% of its food demand, while East Asia and Africa may meet only 79% and 25% respectively.
  6. Small farmers account for 80% of all farms in the LAC region and 64% of agricultural employment.  Supporting family agriculture helps address local and national food security.
  7. The region has only met a fraction of its potential to produce sustainably-sourced food.

The next 10 to 20 years offer a critical window of opportunity to advance new forms of productive and environmentally sustainable agriculture in the region. Taking action now will make the difference between a hungry or well-fed planet.

So, where do we begin? Find out here. www.iadb.org/foodsecuritystudy

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5 Responses to “Want to Feed Africa? Invest in Latin America.”

  • David Liebermann :

    Want to feed Africa? Invest in AFRICA. Also Africa has been blessed with ample arable land and fresh water…Let’s don’t forget dependancy is one of the biggest problems of the developing countries.

    • Ginya Truitt Nakata :

      Hello, David. Thanks for your comment. We couldn’t agree with you more for long-term investment. However, with a simple reduction in post harvest losses, up to 40% of grains and cereals in Guatemala, 40% of root crops in the Andean region and 25% of fruits and vegetables in Ecuador can be saved, to feed people now.

    • Binta Gueye :

      I so agree with David. Creating dependency in the short-term is problematic. Short-term solutions that undermine long-term solutions are just bad.

      There are still quite a lot of hungry people in Latin America, no? Is the goal truly development for either Latin America or Africa, or growing markets for big business to grow even bigger, and thereby exacerbate income disaparity and global poverty?

  • Ari Bonilla :

    I think it is a great opportunity for LAC countries moved to sustainable and certified methods and invest more agriculture in order to growth their economies. Regards

  • Lorenzo :

    Is the IBD working on alternatives as to how this role should be. I think we need to intensify agricultural technology throughout the LAC region. Agricultural production and distribution must be upgraded. What kind of formats is the IBD exploring? We need to discusses this not only in scientific sites or journals but in the fields with the actual stake holders.

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