CIRAD and CIAT forge collaborative next-steps in Asia

14 May, 2015 by (comments)

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It’s a shocking statistic that around one third of food produced globally is not consumed.

It is one issue which CIAT and CIRAD both address in their work, specifically through tackling post-harvest loss. Already, joint initiatives under the Roots, Tubers and Bananas Program aim to reduce post-harvest loss and negative consequences of cassava processing in Asia through maximizing efficiency.

Yet although CIRAD and CIAT have a long history of collaboration and joint interests, there are currently no collaborative projects in Asia. To this end, CIRAD and CIAT had a joint workshop on May 8th at the Agricultural Genetics Institute (AGI) in Hanoi, Vietnam, to discuss and identify future areas of collaboration.

Focusing on two thematic areas: 1) Crop and livestock production systems & natural resources, and; 2) Post harvest & food systems, the group of 20 researchers based in Vietnam, Lao PDR and Colombia were welcomed by Director for Asia, Dindo Campilan, to hammer out an action plan for next steps to collaboration.

Guy Henry, From CIAT’s headquarters in Colombia, outlined the urban-centric approach of CIAT’s Sustainable Food System Strategic Initiative, which aims to tackle the triple health burden and challenges faced by poor urban consumers. There is an opportunity, he said, to focus not only on the rural poor through linking farmers to markets, but also to address food waste and access to affordable and nutritious food for people living in cities and urban slums.

CIRAD Director for Asia, Philippe Girard, outlined CIRAD’s area of work including animal health, conservation agriculture, urban food markets and agricultural linkages – emphasizing transitions to ecological methods of farming and intensification of smallholder farming systems.

Future areas of collaboration were discussed including sustainable food systems, climate change, conservation agriculture, soils, exploring gender roles within communities, trade relations, pest-suppressive landscapes and new landscape approaches incorporating holistic approaches to nutrition which consider income generation and its impact on access to nutritious food.

Further collaboration between CIAT and CIRAD in Asia will be supported by Brice Even, Asia’s Linking Farmers to Markets specialist.

For more information contact Brice Even at b.even@cgiar.org.

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Filed Under: Inside Asia