We, the members of the Montpellier Panel, believe investment in resilient agricultural growth in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) can achieve sustainable food and nutrition security for the continent and significantly contribute to the African and global economy.
As we argued in our 2010 report:
• Food security underpins global security;
• Food trade is central to global trade; and
• Agricultural development is the best route to achieving economic growth that reaches the rural poor and most vulnerable in low income countries.
As is also evident from the experience of recent years, failure to ensure universal food security threatens political stability, social welfare and economic growth. Inclusive, resilient agricultural growth is thus a political imperative. Resilient agricultural growth doesn’t happen by itself – it needs pro-active policy design and investment.
The challenge is to generate agricultural growth that produces enough food, ensures it is accessible to all, is inclusive of the most vulnerable and is resilient, and hence able to withstand the increasing multiple stresses and shocks that afflict the world.
To this end, we believe the priority should be supporting the creation of:
• Resilient markets that enable farmers to increase production and generate income through innovation and taking risks, while ensuring food is available at an affordable price.
• Resilient agriculture that creates agricultural growth out of knowledge and innovation, while simultaneously building the capacity of smallholder farmers to counter environmental degradation and climate change.
• Resilient people who are able to generate diverse livelihoods that provide stable incomes, adequate nutrition and good health in the face of recurrent stresses and shocks.
To achieve these goals we will also need political leadership that demonstrates the necessary vision and will.
To download the whole document, click link: https://workspace.imperial.ac.uk/africanagriculturaldevelopment/Public/Montpellier%20Panel%20Report%202012.pdf