2.AGRICULTURE AT A CROSSROADS
NOTE: Both items refer to the International Assessment of Agricultural Knowledge Science and Technology for Development (IAASTD), a process involving 400 scientific experts and initiated by the World Bank with other UN co-sponsors, that concluded GM was not the answer to poverty, hunger or climate change because there are better alternatives.
1.Today is World Food Day
The UK Food Group issued the following short statement to mark the United Nations' World Food Day:
Today is World Food Day. Or, as many organisations in developing countries are calling it, World Foodless Day, because the scourge of hunger is increasing. Nearly 1 billion people go hungry today, many of them farmers forced off their lands. The Millennium Development Goal of halving hunger is fading”¦ The way forward is to make deep rooted changes in how agriculture is practised, commodities are traded, and the food system is organized and regulated. The necessary changes, towards localised food sovereignty through sustainable production, were highlighted by the UN/World Bank international agricultural assessment (IAASTD) which our government approved in June. With hunger such a scar on humanity, why then does the government remain silent about implementing the findings of this landmark assessment?
Action Aid UK, War on Want, Friends of the Earth, Soil Association, Christian Aid, Practical Action, Econexus, GM Freeze, Find Your Feet, Garden Organic
UK Food Group
2.UK Food Group meeting
AGRICULTURE AT A CROSSROADS:
Implementing the findings of the international agriculture assessment IAASTD
Sponsored by: Andrew George MP and Alan Simpson MP
Keynote speaker: Professor Bob Watson, Director IAASTD and DEFRA Chief Scientist
"Business as usual is not an option”¦. continuing to focus on production alone will undermine our agricultural capital and leave us with an increasingly degraded and divided planet." Bob Watson, March 2008
This is a chance to learn about and discuss a very significant, UN/World Bank-sponsored report from the International Assessment of Agricultural Knowledge, Science and Technology for Development (IAASTD) - www.agassessment.org and www.panna.org/jt/agAssessment.
IAASTD finds that unless agriculture and the way society engages with it is fundamentally changed, it will not be possible to feed the projected 9 billion world population, ensure equity and sustain the planet.
The UK government and 57 others have approved the IAASTD Summary and its Synthesis Report, which focuses on eight key themes ranging from bioenergy, trade and markets to traditional and local knowledge and community-based innovation, especially by women. Now is the time for implementation of its 22 Key Findings, which cover all aspects of food and agriculture policy, rural development and scientific research.
Date: 30th October,
Place: Boothroyd Room, Portcullis House, Houses of Parliament, Westminster, London.
Agenda: Introduction by Andrew George MP; Keynote address by Prof Watson;
Responses from Greenpeace and another IAASTD contributor (tbc); Questions;
Discussion; Summing up.
you will then receive a formal invitation needed for security at Portcullis House
Further information: see www.ukfg.org.uk
This meeting will be preceded by a UK Food Group members meeting at 1:00pm