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Crop Biotech Update

Two Events in Rio+20 Discuss Sustaining Agriculture Amid Various Threats

June 22, 2012

Two recent events at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil discussed ways on how to enhance sustainable agriculture inspite of various challenges that the planet is facing such as population inflation, climate change and scarcity of land and water resources.

Experts from different parts of the globe highlighted the important role of agricultural technologies- from drought tolerance to water harvesting - in increasing crop yields while reducing agriculture's environmental footprint at the same time. International Food Policy Research Institute's (IFPRI) Senior Researcher Claudia Ringler presented the preliminary results of an ongoing IFPRI study that assesses the potential impacts of nine specific agricultural technologies and practices on crop yields, food security, and the environment globally - with an emphasis on developing countries. As the initial result suggests, all nine technologies assessed have potentials to increase  the affordability of food in developing countries by reducing projected price increases for key staple grains.

In relation with IFPRI's observations, Lindiwe Majele Sibanda of the Food, Agriculture and Natural Resource Policy Analysis Network (FANRPAN) and Elisio Contini of the Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation (Embrapa) explained the importance of modification of these technologies to the specific needs of farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa and Brazil, respectively. Adrian Fern├índez of the Commission on Sustainable Agriculture and Climate Change, on the other hand,  presented specific policies that could be implemented by governments to ensure that the technologies can also meet important climate change adaptation and mitigation objectives.

 See the original article at http://www.ifpri.org/blog/agriculture-game-changers-rio20