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PlantwisePlus supports Global Alliance Against Hunger and Poverty revealed at G20-MACS summit in Brazil

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31 May 2024, Africa: CABI’s PlantwisePlus programme is supporting plans for a Global Alliance Against Hunger and Poverty proposed by Brazil’s G20 presidency recently at the 13th Meeting of G20 Agricultural Chief Scientists (G20-MACS) summit in Brasilia, Brazil.

The Global Alliance, to be launched alongside the G20 summit in November this year, will raise resources and knowledge for the implementation of public policies and social technologies to reduce hunger and poverty around the world.

PlantwisePlus support for Global Alliance

Dr Ulrich Kuhlmann, CABI’s Chief Scientist and Executive Director, Global Operations, and Dr Yelitza Colmenarez, Centre Director, Brazil, attended the event and said CABI will help the Global Alliance meet its proposed missions and goals.

This includes embracing the need for ‘better alignment of international support to enable country-level participation of policy instruments and programmes that were proven effective to eliminate hunger and extreme poverty.’

CABI will join the ‘Knowledge Pillar of the Alliance’ for supporting country-led policy and programme implementation and raising awareness of the outcome for the G-20 MACS among agricultural research institutions.

In this regard, Dr Kuhlmann and Dr Colmenarez said the CABI-led global PlantwisePlus programme can support the Global Alliance through its network of partnerships in 27 countries helping smallholder farmers diagnose and mitigate their crop health issues so they can grow more and lose less to potentially devastating crop pests and diseases such as the fall armyworm

This includes the PlantwisePlus Knowledge Bank which houses over 15,000 pieces of content on crop health issues, including pest and disease management, farming practices and pest distribution.

The Global Alliance proposal came as G20 members, guest countries and international organizations were present to discuss research and innovation priorities in agriculture, agroforestry, aquaculture, and other forms of global food production.

Reinforce research cooperation

The meeting was also held to reinforce research cooperation among countries to reduce malnutrition, hunger, safeguard food security and address the consequences of climate change and its impacts.

Renato Godinho, from the Brazilian Ministry of Social Development, who presented the plans for the Global Alliance, said, “We realized that countless global initiatives targeting hunger suffered from a problem: the difficulty of implementation.

“Hence an interministerial committee created this proposal that focuses on how to make it happen.”

He said the intensification of hunger led to the initiative which will have three pillars: a national one, formed by the countries participating in the initiative; a financial pillar, which brings institutions that provide funds for activities; and the pillar of knowledge.

Mr Godinho, who highlighted that the purpose of his participation in MACS was to invite G20 research institutions to support and participate in the initiative, added, “It is in this last pillar that agricultural scientific research comes into play.

“Technological solutions aimed at smallholders, for instance, can be part of the set of public policies aimed at such target audience.”

Digital solutions in agriculture

Dr Kuhlmann and Dr Colmenarez also highlighted the need to support digital solutions in agriculture so that the Global Alliance can help fight hunger around the world as outlined by Sustainable Development Goal 2: Zero Hunger.

This is to optimize input usage and agricultural production in response to climate change risks and impacts while sustainably fulfilling the need to feed a global population of 8.1billion that is expected to reach nearly 10 billion by 2050.

Dr Kuhlmann spoke about how PlantwisePlus is dealing with sustainability, food security and climate resilience through Integrated Crop Management (ICM) and, specifically, Integrated Pest Management (IPM) to tackle crop pests and diseases.

This includes a focus on strategies and practices to minimize socio-economic, health, and environmental risks through IPM and climate-smart agriculture that also includes pesticide risk reduction and the use of safer-to-use and environmentally friendly biological control agents (BCAs).

Evolving plant health threats

Dr Kuhlmann said PlantwisePlus is working in 27 lower-income and lower-middle-income countries to support farmers to manage plant health threats, increase their incomes, improve food security and safety, and reduce biodiversity loss.

Dr Kuhlmann said, “PlantwisePlus is pleased to support the Global Alliance which aligns with our work in collaboration with governments and communities in Asia, Africa, and Latin America to identify resilient, nature-based solutions to climate-based risks in agriculture.

“IPM practices, promoted by CABI, align with the agroecology principles of the Global Alliance in utilising climate-smart agriculture to build a more resilient food system for increased agricultural productivity and food security around the world.”

Developing and implementing response plans

He also highlighted examples of CABI’s work in supporting countries to set up and meet their agricultural ambitions under the Paris Agreement and their associated National Action Plans.

Part of the outcome for the G-20 MACS recognizes the interdependence between climate change, biodiversity, bioeconomy and food security and nutrition.

“We jointly stress the need to foster scientific and technological development that harness traditional knowledge and science and evidence-based practices that conserve and promote the sustainable use of ecosystems and natural resources and contribute to eradicate hunger,” it states.

The next G-20 MACS summit will be hosted by South Africa in 2025.

Also Read: Monsoon Update: Monsoon Hits Kerala Two Days Ahead

(For Latest Agriculture News & Updates, follow Krishak Jagat on Google News)

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