27 September 2023, Rome: The first of its kind Joint Agricultural Machinery and Livestock Exhibition opened today on the premises of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in Rome on the sidelines of the Global Conference on Sustainable Livestock Transformation (25-27 September) and the Global Sustainable Agricultural Mechanization Conference (27-29 September).
The exhibition showcases some of the latest technical developments in agricultural mechanization across the food value chain alongside current farming equipment. It offers over 40 types of equipment on display – ranging from electric tractors and combine harvesters to drones and weeding robots – from 13 countries representing Asia, Oceania, Africa and Central, South America and North America. Also being showcased are examples of equipment being used in projects in Sub Saharan Africa.
Furthermore, the exhibition showcases twelve success stories from various livestock stakeholders around the world – from individual enterprises to communities and governments, from dairy and goat producers to beekeepers and alpaca famers. They share experiences on how they have embraced innovative solutions to sustainably transform livestock production systems, improve livelihoods and nutrition, benefiting people, animals and the planet.
While inaugurating the exhibition, the FAO Director-General QU Dongyu pointed out that more than 50 years ago there had been an active debate on whether we needed agricultural mechanization, a debate that, according to him, slowed down development. He noted that now it is clear that agriculture is dependent on science, machinery and equipment, soil and water, as well as animal protection, while highlighting the need to have all the modern elements in place to produce more and better with less.
“We need science-based solutions and innovations, and we need action,” he stressed.
The Director-General emphasized that both conferences and the exhibition taking place at FAO headquarters this week provide a comprehensive platform for governments, private sector, academia, public, civil society and farmers “to walk the talk” and achieve the full implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) on the ground.
Alessandro Malavolti, Vice-President of the European Agricultural Machinery Association (CEMA), and Altantuya Tseden-Ish, Vice-President of the National Association of Mongolian Agricultural Cooperatives also spoke at the inauguration ceremony.
With focus on sustainability, the exhibition which brought together over 20 different private sector entities, start-ups and a CGIAR centre effectively illustrates the positive impact that mechanization can have on production and the efficient use of resources with minimal impact on the environment.
Examples of the above include direct planters that facilitate the adoption of reduced tillage causing less soil disturbance and biomethane-powered tractors that can be powered with methane produces from organic matter like farm residues like plants and manure.
The exhibition also aims to demonstrate how innovative agricultural mechanization technologies and projects have provided bespoke solutions for farmers of all scales across the entire value chain.
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