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Lester Bowles Pearson presiding at a plenary session of the founding conference of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization. October 1945

In 1951, the FAO's headquarters were moved from Washington, D.C., United States, to Rome, Italy. The agency is directed by the Conference of Member Nations, which meets every two years to review the work carried out by the organization and to Work and Budget for the next two-year period. The Conference elects a council of 49 member states (serve three-year rotating terms) that acts as an interim governing body, and the Director-General, who heads the agency.

The FAO is composed of eight departments: Agriculture and Consumer Protection, Climate, Biodiversity, Land and Water Department, Economic and Social Development, Fisheries and Aquaculture, Forestry, Corporate Services and Technical Cooperation and Programme Management.[16]

Beginning in 1994, the FAO underwent the most significant restructuring since its founding, to decentralize operations, streamline procedures and reduce costs. As a result, savings of about US$50 million, €43 million a year were realized.[17]

Budget

The FAO's Regular Programme budget is funded by its members, through contributions set at the FAO Conference. This budget covers core technical work, cooperation and partnerships includi

The IIA was the first intergovernmental organization to deal with the problems and challenges of agriculture on a global scale. It worked primarily to collect, compile, and publish data on agriculture, ranging from output statistics to a catalog of crop diseases. Among its achievements was the publication of the first agricultural census in 1930.[8]

World War II effectively ended the IIA. During the war, in 1943, United States President Franklin D. Roosevelt called a United Nations Conference on Food and Agriculture, which brought representatives from forty-four governments to Hot Springs, Virginia, U.S. from 18 May to 3 June. The main impetus for the conference was British-born Australian economist Frank L. McDougall, who since 1935 had advocated for an international forum to address hunger and malnutrition.[9]

The Conference ended with a commitment to establish a permanent organization for food and agriculture, which was achieved on 16 October 1945 in Quebec City, Canada, following the Constitution of the Food and Agriculture Organization.[10] The First Session of the FAO Conference was held immediately afterward in the Château Frontenac in Quebec City from 16 October to 1 November 1945.[11]

After the war, the IIA was officially dissolved by resolution of its Permanent Committee on 27 February 1948. Its functions, facilities, and mandate were then transferred to the newly established FAO, which maintained its headquarters in Rome.[12]

The FAO's initial functions supported agricultural and nutrition research and providing technical assistance to member countries to boost production in agriculture, fishery, and forestry.[13] Beginning in the 1960s, it focused on efforts to develop high-yield strains of grain, eliminate protein deficiency, promote rural employment, and increases agricultural exports. To that end, it joined the U.N. General Assembly in creating the U.N. World Food Programme, the largest humanitarian organization addressing hunger and promoting food security.

In 1974, in response to famine in Africa, the FAO convened the first World Food Summit to address widespread hunger, malnutrition, and food insecurity.[14] The meeting resulted in a proclamation that "every man, woman and child has the inalienable right to be free from hunger and malnutrition in order to develop their physical and mental faculties", and a global commitment to eradicate these issues within a decade. A subsequent summit in 1996 addressed the shortcomings in achieving this goal while establishing a strategic plan for eliminating hunger and malnutrition into the 21st century.[15]

In 1951, the FAO's headquarters were moved from Washington, D.C., United States, to Rome, Italy. The agency is directed by the Conference of Member Nations, which meets every two years to review the work carried out by the organization and to Work and Budget for the next two-year period. The Conference elects a council of 49 member states (serve three-year rotating terms) that acts as an interim governing body, and the Director-General, who heads the agency.

The FAO is composed of eight departments: Agriculture and Consumer Protection, Climate, Biodiversity, Land and Water Department, Economic and Social Development, Fisheries and Aquaculture, Forestry, Corporate Services and Technical Cooperation and Programme Management.[16]

Beginning in 1994, the FAO underwent the most significant restructuring since its founding, to decentralize operations, streamline procedures and reduce costs. As a result, savings of about US$50 million, €43 million a year were realized.[17]

Budget

The FAO's Regular Programme budget is funded by its members, through contributions set at the FAO Conference. This budget covers core technical work, cooperation and partnerships including the Technical Cooperation Programme, knowledge exchange, policy and advocacy, direction and administration, governance and security.

The total FAO Budget planned for 2018–2019 is US$1,005.6 million.[18] The voluntary contributions provided by members and other partners support mechanical and emergency (including rehabilitation) assistance to governments for clearly defined purposes linked to the results framework, as well as direct support to FAO's core work. The voluntary contributions are expected to reach approximately US$1.6 billion in 2016–2017.

This overall budget covers core technical work, cooperation and partnerships, leading to Food and Agriculture Outcomes at 71 percent; Core Functions at 11 percent; the Country Office Network – 5 percent; Capital and Security Expenditure – 2 percent; Administration – 6 percent; and Technical and Cooperation Program – 5 percent.

Directors-General

  • United Kingdom John Boyd Orr, October 1945 – April 1948
  • United States Norris E. Dodd, April 1948 – December 1953
  • United States Philip V. Cardon, January 1954 – April 1956
  • The FAO is composed of eight departments: Agriculture and Consumer Protection, Climate, Biodiversity, Land and Water Department, Economic and Social Development, Fisheries and Aquaculture, Forestry, Corporate Services and Technical Cooperation and Programme Management.[16]

    Beginning in 1994, the FAO underwent the most significant restructuring since its founding, to decentralize operations, streamline procedures and reduce costs. As a result, savings of about US$50 million, €43 million a year were realized.[17]

    The FAO's Regular Programme budget is funded by its members, through contributions set at the FAO Conference. This budget covers core technical work, cooperation and partnerships including the Technical Cooperation Programme, knowledge exchange, policy and advocacy, direction and administration, governance and security.

    The total FAO Budget planned for 2018–2019 is US$1,005.6 million.[18] The voluntary contributions provided by members and other partners support mechanical and emergency (including rehabilitation) assistance to governments for clea

    The total FAO Budget planned for 2018–2019 is US$1,005.6 million.[18] The voluntary contributions provided by members and other partners support mechanical and emergency (including rehabilitation) assistance to governments for clearly defined purposes linked to the results framework, as well as direct support to FAO's core work. The voluntary contributions are expected to reach approximately US$1.6 billion in 2016–2017.

    This overall budget covers core technical work, cooperation and partnerships, leading to Food and Agriculture Outcomes at 71 percent; Core Functions at 11 percent; the Country Office Network – 5 percent; Capital and Security Expenditure – 2 percent; Administration – 6 percent; and Technical and Cooperation Program – 5 percent.

    The world headquarters are located in Rome, in the former seat of the Department of Italian East Africa. One of the most notable features of the building was the Axum Obelisk which stood in front of the agency seat, although just outside the territory allocated to FAO by the Italian Government. It was taken from Ethiopia by Benito Mussolini's troops in 1937 as a war chest, and returned on 18 April 2005.

    Regional offices

    Sub-regional offices

    Liaison Office for North America in Washington, DC

    Liaison offices

    Partnership and Liaison Offices

    Partnership and Liaison Offices provide for stronger country participation in FAO’s work and programmes at national, subregional, regional and interregional levels as well as enhanced cooperation through unilateral trust fund projects and South-South Cooperation.

    • Azerbaijan
    • Cameroon
    • Cote d'Ivoire
    • Equatorial Guinea
    • Kazakhstan
    • Mexico
    • Republic of Korea

    Priority work areas

    FAO has outlined the following priorities in its fight against hunger.[20]

    • Help eliminate hunger, food insecurity and malnutrition – contribute to the eradication of hunger by facilitating policies and political commitments to support food security and by making sure that up-to-date information about hunger and nutrition challenges and solutions is available and accessible.
    • Make agriculture, forestry and fisheries more productive and sustainable – promote evidence-based policies and practices to support highly productive agricultural sectors (crops, livestock, forestry and fisheries), while ensuring that the natural resource base does not suffer in the process.
    • Reduce rural poverty – help the rural poor gain access to the resources and services they need – including rural employment and social protection – to forge a path out of poverty.
    • Enable inclusive and efficient agricultural and food systems – help to build safe and efficient food systems that support smallholder agriculture and reduce poverty and hunger in rural areas.
    • Increase the resilience of livelihoods to threats and crises – help countries to prepare for natural and human-caused disasters by reducing their risk and enhancing the resilience of their food and agricultural systems.

    Two fundamental areas of work – gender and governance - are fully integrated in the above strategic objective action plans.

    Programmes and achievements

    Food

    Codex Alimentarius

    FAO and the World Health Organization created the Codex Alimentarius Commission in 1961 to develop food standards, guidelines and texts such as codes of practice under the Joint FAO/ WHO Food Standards Programme. The main aims of the programme are protecting consumer health, ensuring fair trade and promoting co-ordination of all food standards work undertaken by intergovernmental and non-governmental organization.

    World Food Summit

    In 1996, FAO organized the World Food Summit, attended by 112 Heads or Deputy Heads of State and Government. The Summit concluded with the signing of the Rome Declaration, which established the goal of halving the number of people who suffer from hunger by the year 2015.[21] At the same time, 1,200 civil society organizations (CSOs) from 80 countries participated in an NGO forum. The forum was critical of the growing industrialization of agriculture and called upon governments – and FAO – to do more to protect the 'Right to Food' of the poor.[22]

    TeleFood

    In 1997, FAO launched TeleFood, a campaign of concerts, sporting events and other activities to harness the power of media, celebrities and concerned citizens to help fight hunger. Since its start, the campaign has generated close to US$28 million, €15 million in donations. Money raised through TeleFood pays for small, sustainable projects that help small-scale farmers produce more food for their families and communities.[23]

    The projects provide tangible resources, such as fishing equipment, seeds and agricultural implements. They vary enormously, from helping families raise pigs in Venezuela, through creating school gardens in Cape Verde and Mauritania or providing school lunches in Uganda and teaching children to grow food, to raising fish in a leper community in India.

    FAO Goodwill Ambassadors

    The FAO Goodwill Ambassadors Programme was initiated in 1999. It was created to increase public awareness and to disseminate information about issues related to food security and hunger in the world.

    Right to Food Guidelines

    In 2004 the Right to Food Guidelines were adopted, offering guidance to states on how to implement their obligations on the right to food.[24]

    Response to food crisis

    In December 2007, FAO launched its Initiative on Soaring Food Prices to help small producers raise their output and earn more. Under the initiative, FAO contributed to the work of the UN High-Level Task Force on the Global Food Crisis, which produced the Comprehensive Framework for Action. FAO has carried out projects in over 25 countries and inter-agency missions in nearly 60, scaled up its monitoring through the Global Information and Early Warning System on Food and Agriculture, provided policy advice to governments while supporting their efforts to increase food production, and advocated for more investment in agriculture. s also worked hand-in-hand with the European Union. One example of its work is a US$10.2 million, €7.5 billion scheme to distribute and multiply quality seeds in Haiti,[25] which has significantly increased food production, thereby providing cheaper food and boosting

    FAO–EU partnership

    In May 2009, FAO and the European Union signed an initial aid package worth €125 million to support small farmers in countries hit hard by rising food prices. The aid package falls under the EU's €1 billion Food Facility, set up with the UN Secretary-General's High-Level Task Force on the Global Food Crisis and FAO to focus on programmes that will have a quick but lasting impact on food security.[26] FAO is receiving a total of around €200 million for work in 25 countries, of which €15.4 million goes to Zimbabwe.[27]

    Food security programmes

    The Special Programme for Food Security is FAO's flagship initiative for reaching the goal of halving the number of hungry in the world by 2015 (currently estimated at close to 1 billion people), as part of its commitment to the Millennium Development Goals. Through projects in over 100 countries worldwide, the programme promotes effective, tangible solutions to the elimination of hunger, undernourishment and poverty. Currently 102 countries are engaged in the programme and of these approximately 30 have begun shifting from pilot to national programmes. To maximize the impact of its work, FAO strongly promotes national ownership and local empowerment in the countries in which it operates.[28]

    Online campaign against hunger

    The 1billionhungry project became the EndingHunger campaign in April 2011. Spearheaded by FAO in partnership with other UN agencies and private nonprofit groups, the EndingHunger movement pushes the boundaries of conventional public advocacy. It builds on the success in 2010 of The 1billonhungry project and the subsequent chain of public events that led to the collection of over three million signatures on a global petition to end hunger (www.EndingHunger.org). The petition was originally presented to representatives of world governments at a ceremony in Rome on 30 November 2010.[29]

    The web and partnerships are two pivotal and dynamic aspects of EndingHunger. The campaign relies on the assistance of organizations and institutions that can facilitate the project's diffusion, by placing banners on their own websites or organizing events aimed to raise awareness of the project. In its 2011 season, the campaign expanded its multimedia content, pursued mutual visibility arrangements with partner organizations, and sharpened its focus on 14- to 25-year-olds, who were encouraged to understand their potential as a social movement to push for the end of hunger.

    Moreover, the EndingHunger project is a viral communication campaign, renewing and expanding its efforts to build the movement through Facebook, Twitter and other social networks. Those who sign the petition can spread the link of the EndingHunger website to their friends, via social media or mail, in order to gain awareness and signatures for the petition. The next interim objective is to grow the EndingHunger movement's Facebook community to 1 million members. As with the petition, the more people who get involved, the more powerful the message to governments: "We are no longer willing to accept the fact that hundreds of millions live in chronic hunger."[30] Groups and individuals can also decide on their own to organize an event about the project, simply by gathering friends, whistles, T-shirts and banners (whistles and T-shirts can be ordered, and petition sign sheets downloaded, on the endinghunger.org website) and thereby alert people about chronic hunger by using the yellow whistle.

    The original 1billionhungry campaign borrowed as its slogan the line "I'm as mad as hell, and I'm not going to take this anymore!", used by Peter Finch in the 1976 film, Network.[31] Meanwhile, the yellow whistle has been the campaign symbol from the start, from 1billionhungry to Ending Hunger. (The creative concept was provided by the McCann Erickson Italy Communication Agency.) It symbolizes the fact that we are "blowing the whistle" on the silent disaster of hunger. It is both a symbol and – at many live events taking place around the world – a physical means of expressing frustration and making some noise about the hunger situation.[32]

    Both The 1billionhungry and the EndingHunger campaigns have continued to attract UN Goodwill Ambassadors from the worlds of music and cinema, literature, sport, activism and government. Some of the well known individuals who have become involved include former Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, former presidents of Chile Ricardo Lagos and Michelle Bachelet, actress Susan Sarandon, actors Jeremy Irons and Raul Bova, singers Céline Dion and Anggun, authors Isabelle Allende and Andrea Camilleri, musician Chucho Valdés and Olympic track-and-field legend Carl Lewis.[33]

    75 years of FAO

    Over the past 75 years, FAO’s outlook and body of work have acquired new environmental and sustainability dimensions, with a strategic re-invention taking place in 2020. As the COVID-19 pandemic exacerbates vulnerabilities linked to conflict and climate change and with only ten years left to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, there has been an emphasis on leveraging research partnerships, digitalization and innovation to help end hunger and malnutrition.[34]

    Agriculture

    Priority work areas

    FAO has outlined the following priorities in its fight against hunger.[20]

    • Help eliminate hunger, food insecurity and malnutrition – contribute to the eradication of hunger by facilitating policies and political commitments to support food security and by making sure that up-to-date information about hunger and nutrition challenges and solutions is available and accessible.
    • Make agriculture, forestry and fisheries more productive and sustainable – promote evidence-based policies and practices to support highly productive agricultural sectors (crops, livestock, forestry and fisheries), while ensuring that the natural resource base does not suffer in the process.
    • Reduce rural poverty – help the rural poor gain access to the resources and services they need – including rural employment and social protection – to forge a path out of poverty.
    • Enable inclusive and efficient agricultural and food systems – help to build safe and efficient food systems that support smallholder agriculture and reduce poverty and hunger in rural areas.
    • Increase the resilience of livelihoods to threats and crises – help countries to prepare for natural and human-caused disasters by reducing their risk and enhancing the resilience of their food and agricultural systems.

    Two fundamental areas of work – gender and governance - are fully integrated in the above strategic objective action plans.

    Programmes and achievements

    Food

    Codex Alimentarius

    FAO and the World Health Organization created the Codex Alimentarius Commission in 1961 to develop food standards, guidelines and texts such as codes of practice under the Joint FAO/ WHO Food Standards Programme. The main aims of the programme are protecting consumer health, ensuring fair trade and promoting co-ordination of all food standards work undertaken by intergovernmental and non-governmental organization.

    World Food Summit

    In 1996, FAO organized the World Food Summit, attended by 112 Heads or Deputy Heads of State and Government. The Summit concluded with the signing of the Rome Declaration, which established the goal of halving the number of people who suffer from hunger by the year 2015.[21] At the same time, 1,200 civil society organizations (CSOs) from 80 countries participated in an NGO forum. The forum was critical of the growing industrialization of agriculture and called upon governments – and FAO – to do more to protect the 'Right to Food' of the poor.[22]

    TeleFood

    In 1997, FAO launched TeleFood, a campaign of concerts, sporting events and other activities to harness the power of media, celebrities and concerned citizens to help fight hunger. Since its start, the campaign has generated close to US$28 million, €15 million in donations. Money raised through TeleFood pays for small, sustainable projects that help small-scale farmers produce more food for their families and communities.[23]

    The projects provide tangible resources, such as fishing equipment, seeds and agricultural implements. They vary enormously, from helping families raise pigs in Venezuela, through creating school gardens in Cape Verde and Mauritania or providing school lunches in Uganda and teaching children to grow food, to raising fish in a leper community in India.

    FAO Goodwill Ambassadors

    Food

    Codex Alimentarius

    FAO and the World Health Organization created the Codex Alimentarius Commission in 1961 to develop food standards, guidelines and texts such as

    FAO and the World Health Organization created the Codex Alimentarius Commission in 1961 to develop food standards, guidelines and texts such as codes of practice under the Joint FAO/ WHO Food Standards Programme. The main aims of the programme are protecting consumer health, ensuring fair trade and promoting co-ordination of all food standards work undertaken by intergovernmental and non-governmental organization.

    World Food Summit

    In 1996, FAO organized the World Food Summit, attended by 112 Heads or Deputy Heads of State and Government. The Summit concluded with the signing of the Rome Declaration, which established the goal of halving the number of people who suffer from hunger by the year 2015.[21] At the sa

    In 1996, FAO organized the World Food Summit, attended by 112 Heads or Deputy Heads of State and Government. The Summit concluded with the signing of the Rome Declaration, which established the goal of halving the number of people who suffer from hunger by the year 2015.[21] At the same time, 1,200 civil society organizations (CSOs) from 80 countries participated in an NGO forum. The forum was critical of the growing industrialization of agriculture and called upon governments – and FAO – to do more to protect the 'Right to Food' of the poor.[22]

    TeleFood

    In 1997, FAO launched TeleFood, a campaign of concerts, sporting events and other activities to harness the power of media, celebrities and concerned citizens to help fight hunger. Sinc

    In 1997, FAO launched TeleFood, a campaign of concerts, sporting events and other activities to harness the power of media, celebrities and concerned citizens to help fight hunger. Since its start, the campaign has generated close to US$28 million, €15 million in donations. Money raised through TeleFood pays for small, sustainable projects that help small-scale farmers produce more food for their families and communities.[23]

    The projects provide tangible resources, such as fishing equipment, seeds and agricultural implements. They vary enormously, from helping families raise pigs in Venezuela, through creating school gardens in Cape Verde and Mauritania or providing school lunches in Uganda and teaching children to grow food, to raising fish

    The projects provide tangible resources, such as fishing equipment, seeds and agricultural implements. They vary enormously, from helping families raise pigs in Venezuela, through creating school gardens in Cape Verde and Mauritania or providing school lunches in Uganda and teaching children to grow food, to raising fish in a leper community in India.

    The FAO Goodwill Ambassadors Programme was initiated in 1999. It was created to increase public awareness and to disseminate information about issues related to food security and hunger in the world.

    Right to Food Guidelines

    In 2004 the Right to Food Guidelines were adopted, offering guidance to states on how to implement their obligations on the right to food.[24]

    Response to food crisis

    In December 2007, FAO launched its Initiative on Soaring Food Prices to help small producers raise their output and earn more. Under the initiative, FAO contributed to the work of the UN High-Level Task Force on the Global Food Crisis, which produced the Comprehensive Framework for Action. FAO has carried out projects in over 25 countries and inter-agency missions in nearly 60, scaled up its monitoring through the Global Information and Early Warning System on Food and Agriculture, provided policy advice to governments while supporting their efforts to increase food production, and advocated for more investment in agriculture. s also worked hand-in-hand with the European Union. One example of its work is a US$10.2 million, €7.5 billion scheme to distribute and multiply quality seeds in Haiti,[25] which has significantly increased food production, thereby providing cheaper food and boosting

    FAO–EU partnership

    The Special Programme for Food

    The Special Programme for Food Security is FAO's flagship initiative for reaching the goal of halving the number of hungry in the world by 2015 (currently estimated at close to 1 billion people), as part of its commitment to the Millennium Development Goals. Through projects in over 100 countries worldwide, the programme promotes effective, tangible solutions to the elimination of hunger, undernourishment and poverty. Currently 102 countries are engaged in the programme and of these approximately 30 have begun shifting from pilot to national programmes. To maximize the impact of its work, FAO strongly promotes national ownership and local empowerment in the countries in which it operates.[28]

    Online campaign against hunger

    FAO created the International Plant Protection Convention or IPPC in 1952. This international treaty organization works to prevent the international spread of pests and plant diseases in both cultivated and wild plants. Among its functions are the maintenance of lists of plant pests, tracking of pest outbreaks, and coordination of technical assistance between member nations. As of July 2018, 183 contracting parties have ratified the treaty.

    Plant Treaty (ITPGRFA)

    FAO is depositary of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture, also called Plant Treaty, Seed Treaty or ITPGRFA

    FAO is depositary of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture, also called Plant Treaty, Seed Treaty or ITPGRFA, entered into force on 29 June 2004.

    Alliance Against Hunger and MalnutritionThe Alliance Against Hunger and Malnutrition (AAHM)[35] aims to address how countries and organizations can be more effective in advocating and carrying out actions to address hunger and malnutrition. As a global partnership, AAHM creates global connections between local, regional, national and international institutions that share the goals of fighting hunger and malnutrition. The organization works to address food security by enhancing resources and knowledge sharing and strengthening hunger activities within countries and across state lines at the regional and international levels.

    Following the World Food Summit, the Alliance was initially created in 2002 as the 'International Alliance Against Hunger (IAAH)' to strengthen and coordinate national efforts in the fight against hunger and malnutrition. The mission of the Alliance originates from the first and eight UN Millennium Development Goals; reducing the number of people that suffer from hunger in half by 2015 (preceded by the "Rome Declaration" in 1996) and developing a global partnership for development. The Alliance was founded by the Rome-based food agencies – the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO),[36] UN World Food Programme (WFP),[3

    Following the World Food Summit, the Alliance was initially created in 2002 as the 'International Alliance Against Hunger (IAAH)' to strengthen and coordinate national efforts in the fight against hunger and malnutrition. The mission of the Alliance originates from the first and eight UN Millennium Development Goals; reducing the number of people that suffer from hunger in half by 2015 (preceded by the "Rome Declaration" in 1996) and developing a global partnership for development. The Alliance was founded by the Rome-based food agencies – the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO),[36] UN World Food Programme (WFP),[37] International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD),[38] – and Bioversity International.[39]

    AAHM connects top-down and bottom-up anti-hunger development initiatives, linking governments, UN organizations, and NGOs together in order to increase effectiveness through unity.[40]

    During the 1990s, FAO took a leading role in the promotion of integrated pest management for rice production in Asia. Hundreds of thousands of farmers were trained using an approach known as the Farmer Field School (FFS).[41] Like many of the programmes managed by FAO, the funds for Farmer Field Schools came from bilateral Trust Funds, with Australia, Netherlands, Norway and Switzerland acting as the leading donors. FAO's efforts in this area have drawn praise from NGOs that have otherwise criticized much of the work of the organization.

    Transboundary pests and diseases

    FAO's technical cooperation department hosts an Investment Centre that promotes greater investment in agriculture and rural development by helping developing countries identify and formulate sustainable agricultural policies, programmes and projects. It mobilizes funding from multilateral institutions such as the World Bank, regional devel

    Increasing capacity building for plant breeding in developing countries is critical for the achievement of meaningful results in poverty and hunger reduction and to reverse the current worrisome trends. Plant breeding is a well recognized science capable of widening the genetic and adaptability base of cropping systems, by combining conventional selection techniques and modern technologies. It is essential to face and prevent the recurrence of crises such as that of the soaring food prices and to respond to the increasing demands for crop based sources of energy.

    FAO's technical cooperation department hosts an Investment Centre that promotes greater investment in agriculture and rural development by helping developing countries identify and formulate sustainable agricultural policies, programmes and projects. It mobilizes funding from multilateral institutions such as the World Bank, regional development banks and international funds as well as FAO resources.[45]

    Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS)

    FAO has a unit focused on Animal Genetic Resources, which are defined as “those animal species that are used, or may be used, for the production of food and agriculture, and the populations within each of them. These populations within each species can be classified as wild a

    FAO has a unit focused on Animal Genetic Resources, which are defined as “those animal species that are used, or may be used, for the production of food and agriculture, and the populations within each of them. These populations within each species can be classified as wild and feral populations, landraces and primary populations, standardised breeds, selected lines, varieties, strains and any conserved genetic material; all of which are currently categorized as Breeds."[46] FAO assists countries in implementation of the Global Plan of Action for Animal Genetic Resources. FAO supports a variety of ex situ and in situ conservation strategies including cryoconservation of animal genetic resources.

    Forestry

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