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Food Security: Conservation, Use and Delivery of Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture






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    Book (series)
    The Second Report on the State of the World’s Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture 2010

    Plant genetic resources provide a basis for food security, livelihood support and economic development as a major component of biodiversity. The Second Report on the State of the World’s Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture demonstrates the central role plant genetic diversity continues to play in shaping agriculture growth in the face of climate change and other environmental challenges. It is based on information gathered from Country Reports, regional syntheses, thematic studie s and scientific literature, documenting the major achievements made in this sector during the past decade and identifying the critical gaps and needs that should urgently be addressed. The Report provides the decision-makers with a technical basis for updating the Global Plan of Action on Conservation and Sustainable Use of Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture. It also aims to attract the attention of the global community to set priorities for the effective management of plant genet ic resources for the future.

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    Project
    Support for the Development of National Capacities for Conservation and Sustainable Utilization of Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture - TCP/SFS/3601 2020
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    Food and nutrition insecurity remain major barriers to the development of Southern Africa. The primary challenge being faced concerns the sustainable production of greater quantities of high quality and diversified foods. Yet, rural farming communities still rely heavily on local crops despite the wide range of crops being farmed in the region. The use of integrated agro-ecological farming, which draws upon crop and livestock production methods, as well as fishery and forestry practices, among other techniques, has the potential to address food and nutrition security concerns in the region. However, there is a need to raise community awareness and develop farmers’ understanding of sustainable integrated farming practices. Plant genetic resources for food and agriculture (PGRFA) are crucial for sustainable production, forming a biological foundation for food security and supporting the livelihoods of many population groups. Moreover, they are the most important raw material to plant breeders and the most essential input to farmers seeking to improve the quality and quantity of their produce. In the SADC, there is an urgent need to make better use of the genetic diversity conserved in gene banks throughout the region. This can be achieved by pre-breeding for specific traits and strengthening human capacity in hands-on plant breeding. The interface between gene banks and breeders has not been adequately addressed in the region and is therefore the focus of this project.
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    Booklet
    Conservation and sustainable use of plant genetic resources for food and agriculture
    Safeguarding our food security
    2023
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    The booklet describes the importance of plant genetic resources for food and agriculture (PGRFA) to address food insecurity, biodiversity loss, climate change adaptation, and poverty alleviation. It explains why PGRFA matter to food security and how the conservation and sustainable use of PGRFA are addressed in the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture, including what guidance the International Treaty offers in its Articles 5 and 6 regarding measures and activities to be undertaken to support the conservation and sustainable use of PGRFA. The booklet also describes the four types of challenges and bottlenecks to the conservation and sustainable use of PGRFA, including legal, policy and institutional challenges; technical and scientific issues; seed distribution and marketing of landraces and farmers’ crop varieties; and resource constraints. Finally, the booklet suggests how to improve current practices to safeguard our food security, with an emphasis on the responsibility of governments and institutions; the importance of public awareness, education and engagement; the role of science, research and innovation; and the need for resources. The booklet is designed to enhance understanding and awareness of the importance of PGRFA and increase the visibility of the International Treaty on PGRFA among the various stakeholders who work in crop conservation and use in their daily activities, such as agricultural researchers, gene bank personnel, breeders and farmers as well as other interested parties, including academia, the media and the general public.

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