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April 16, 2015 – The IAFN, YPARD and GFRAS are among the global actors spearheading a worldwide “Call to Action” that asks governments to promote and foster talent development, knowledge dissemination, and skill enhancement in the agricultural sector. The Call was jointly drafted by businesses, youth organizations, academia, and agricultural knowledge & extension bodies, and has been circulated to the member countries of the UN’s Committee on World Food Security (CFS).

In its official seat at the CFS, the private sector is highlighting the urgency of unified action on talent development in agriculture in order to make the sector more sustainable, competitive, productive, and efficient. Emerging trends, shifting global markets, climate change, and the ageing of the agricultural workforce underscore the importance of this issue. Now more than ever, development actors must highlight the opportunities and benefits of a career in agriculture. The private sector will be integral to these efforts.

The five key points of the Call ask development actors to:

  1. Create an enabling environment and incentives for private sector engagement in talent development to improve linkages between supply and demand of knowledge and skills;
  2. Promote demand-driven and innovative agriculture education, training, and skills development programmes geared towards transformation and maintaining high performance culture at all levels;
  3. Recruit and retain youth and women in agriculture through incentives and the promotion of conducive environments for equitable access to secure land tenure, inputs, financial services, knowledge, and markets;
  4. Develop national agricultural plans and resource mobilisation strategies to enhance talent development in agriculture, food, and natural resources while including women and youth in the process;
  5. Develop monitoring, learning, evaluation, and knowledge management systems for talent development

These measures will help to set agriculture on the path to a brighter future, for the sector and for the entire globe.

Agricultural businesses and farm groups are invited to join us in our debates, in Rome or virtually. Social media hashtag: #CallforAction

March 20, 2015 – This week members of the Private Sector Mechanism (PSM) were at the UN FAO Head Quarters in Rome to give their views on how new Principles on Responsible Agricultural Investment can be used to respond to the urgent need to increase global investment in farm production. The ten Principles were endorsed by the UN Committee on World Food Security (CFS) in October 2014 and are designed to ‘provide a framework to rethink investment in agriculture and food systems’. The agri-business community was invited to help draft the Principles, which look at natural resource use, land rights, employment, empowerment of women, farm innovation, and more.

At this week’s meeting the PSM members highlighted that on average, businesses of all sizes provide 60% of GDP, 80% of capital flows and 90% of jobs in developing countries, and are the major source of the US$1 trillion a year needed to finance development. In the context of the CFS Principles, governments can leverage this potential by prioritizing stable, predictable and transparent regulatory frameworks and legal systems to attract sustainable investments in agriculture.

The Private Sector Mechanism speakers at the ‘Kick-Start’ meeting were:

  1. Barrie Bain, International Fertilizer Industry Association
  2. Natalia Federighi, Yara International
  3. Bernd Schanzenbacher, EBG Capital

The PSM official statement is here:

pdf Statement by PSM: RAI Kickstart Meeting (351 KB)

Every two years, the Private Sector Mechanism elects a focal point (currently being filled by the International Agri-Food Network). The next election is at the annual meeting on May 12 in Rome. Organisations that wish to be nominated to be focal point for the Private Sector Mechanism should submit names by March 1, 2015 to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

February 4, 2015 – The UN Committee on World Food Security (CFS) has published a promotional video featuring seven leaders from the food and farming business community alongside governments, UN officials and civil society representatives.

The aim of the video is to bring to light the work undertaken by the CFS, the United Nations’ forum for reviewing policies concerning world food security. Importantly, agri-businesses have a ‘seat at the table’ in this forum through what is known as the Private Sector Mechanism, allowing their voices to be heard on an equal footing with those of governments, political decision makers and civil society.

In order of appearance, the private sector representatives on the video are:

Jan Dyer, Canadian Canola Growers’ Association
Mike Michener, CropLife International
Nico Van Belzen, International Dairy Federation
Natalia Federighi, Yara International
Charles Ogang, Uganda National Farmers Federation
Barrie Bain, Informa
Robynne Anderson, IAFN

Find out more about the work we do with the CFS here.

Mark your calendars: registration for the symposium on Understanding the Double Burden of Malnutrition for Effecti… https://t.co/6M85chBj0H
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