World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Initiative Helps Somalis to Harvest Food from Local Farmers

UN-Backed Initiative Enables Somalis to Harvest Food from Local Farmers

New York, Mar 6 2014 - Farmers in south-central Somalia – the country’s “grain basket,” which has been severely affected by conflict and drought in recent years – are for the first time growing and selling grain for other Somalis as part of a United Nations-supported initiative.

“This initiative shows that Somali farmers are not helpless. With minimal assistance including agricultural inputs, tools, technical skills in storage, grading and marketing, they can make a great difference,” said Luca Alinovi, outgoing representative in Somalia for the UN Food and Agricultural Organization’s (FAO), one of the two UN agencies backing the project.

UN World Food Programme (WFP) Country Representative Stefano Porretti described the initiative “as a significant achievement for the participating farmers” and a milestone for WFP’s operations in Somalia.

“Strengthening livelihoods and increasing resiliency is an integral part of WFP’s strategy in Somalia,” Mr. Porretti added. “WFP will continue to support small-scale farmers in Somalia by empowering them to produce and sell more food, so as to become competitive players in local markets.”

The initiative is backed by funding from the Government of Austria which allowed the UN to buy 200 metric tons of high-quality maize from the farmers, for redistribution in other parts of the country.

For the past 12 years, experts from FAO and WFP, supported by the EU, have worked with communities to increase the quality of their production to meet international standards. Farmers were also trained to limit losses by keeping the grain free of contamination and pests, and how to handle, store and manage grain in warehouses.

Despite these advances, Somali farmers only meet 40 per cent of the country’s domestic cereal demand. According to the latest figures from the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), an estimated 857,000 people inside Somalia are currently “in crisis and emergency conditions” in terms of food insecurity.

Somalia has been torn asunder by factional fighting since 1991 but has recently made progress towards stability. In 2011, Al-Shabaab insurgents retreated from Mogadishu and last year, new Government institutions emerged, as the country ended a transitional phase toward setting up a permanent, democratically-elected Government.

Parts of the country have now stabilized, allowing the UN to try to scale up the food initiative.

For more details go to UN News Centre at http://www.un.org/news

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Gordon Campbell: On The Aftermath Of Brexit

Be careful of what you ask for. Now that it has woken up from its Brexit victory hangover, is Britain acting as if it has just won the World Cup? Hardly. More>>

ALSO:

UK Labour Statement: The Shooting Of MP Jo Cox

Jeremy Corbyn MP, Leader of the Labour Party said: “The whole of the Labour Party and Labour family - and indeed the whole country - will be in shock at the horrific murder of Jo Cox today. Jo had a lifelong record of public service and a deep commitment to humanity." More>>

ALSO:

Wellington.Scoop: Rainbow Colours On MFC In Sympathy For Florida Killings
Wellington’s Michael Fowler Centre will be lit in colours of the rainbow Monday as a gesture of support for the LGBTI victims of the Pulse nightclub attack in Orlando, Florida. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On How Obama’s Supreme Court Choice Says Everything (Bad) About His Presidency

Nothing has epitomised the presidency of Barack Obama quite like his Supreme Court nominees. Time and again, Republican presidents will blithely nominate right wing ideological extremists (Antonin Scalia, Samuel Alito, Clarence Thomas) who only sometimes misfire and turn out to be liberals in disguise (David Souter). Yet Obama has consistently skipped over the judicially qualified liberals and gone for a succession of centrists... More>>

ALSO:

Turkey: UN Secretary-General On The Terrorist Bombing In Ankara

The Secretary-General condemns the terrorist attack in Ankara earlier today. According to the latest reports, the explosion in the Kizilay district killed and wounded dozens of people. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news