A profound shift of our global food systems is needed to reduce the number of people facing extreme hunger. With industrial agricultural systems making up the lion’s share of the estimated 24% of agriculture’s direct share of global greenhouse gas emissions, transitions towards more sustainable and equitable production systems are required globally. One way to do so is through agroecology, which takes into account natural ecosystems and planting a diversity of crops to boost the resilience and sustainability of the farming system as a whole. Evidence from Trócaire’s projects in Central America and Sub-Saharan Africa confirm how agroecological approaches support people’s right to adequate food and build farmers’ resilience (socio-political and economic trading power) to climate change and other shocks.
Read More: Going Wild: The wild and traditional foods that Trócaire is working to recover in Africa and Central America
Increase investment in agriculture
To end hunger, there must be an increase in investment in agriculture at a global level through overseas development aid and at a national level. Richer countries should also allocate much higher rates of climate finance as significant resources are needed to adapt to the adverse effects and reduce the impacts of a changing climate. Increased investment should be non-market distorting and promote social equity and sustainability.
Read More: 5 things you need to know about famine
Disaster risk reduction
A crucial part of Trócaire’s work is supporting people to protect themselves, their livelihoods and their belongings from shocks and disasters including climate-related, political, conflict, disease epidemics, economic and financial disruptions. Climate extremes and variabilities are predicted to worsen in the future, so we must find ways to strengthen farming systems and livelihoods around the world. This can range from locally-led active monitoring, early-warning measures, to infrastructural measures such as reinforcing homes, to natural resource management such as regeneration of vegetation in hazardous, eroded zones.
In the Horn and East Africa farmers are facing a fifth consecutive season of drought, compounded by the recent rise in food and fuel due to the war in Ukraine. The World Food Programme (WFP) says with crops continuing to fail and livestock being wiped out, an estimated 7.2 million people are waking up hungry every day in southern and south-eastern Ethiopia for example. In Somalia the situation is so bad that famine may be declared in parts of the country in the coming weeks.
Mother-of-five Ayoyo Daguto from the South Omo Zone, in southern Ethiopia said the recent drought has destroyed all her crops and her family have no food to eat.