Agriculture and Environment
Agriculture determines the elementary conditions for food production. However, it is especially in rural regions that hunger is a part of daily life. The situation remains volatile in the countries of the global south. Although smallholders are cultivating vegetables, grains and fruits, they do not have enough to eat. The reasons for this are complex. They clearly demonstrate where development cooperation must begin in order to allow those affected to secure their nutrition on their own and for the long term. Welthungerhilfe is therefore decisively pursuing one core objective: Zero Hunger by 2030.
Making Local Agriculture Productive
Food and agricultural raw products are in high demand on the world market. The consequences of rising prices are being borne by the poorest people, who can no longer afford healthy meals. Income from selling produce is often vanishingly small. Long rains or droughts, provoked by global climate change, additionally exacerbate the situation. However, the smallholders depend on their fields. Higher-yield, more nutritious crops could fight hunger and poverty while saving natural resources. The principle of location-specific agriculture, e.g. through effective cultivation methods, is an important component of promoting rural development.
A Legitimate Question: Who Owns the Land?
Access to viable agricultural land is a prerequisite. However, systematic land grabs are making this more difficult. Although smallholders have been working the same land for generations, their livelihoods are being taken from them without consideration of their legal rights. Large, foreign corporations are replacing local small enterprises with mass plantations. UN guidelines protect the farmers’ land and usage rights, but their right to be heard by their government must be strengthened.