New Report Urges a U.S. Global Food Security Focus on Science, Trade and
WASHINGTON, DC -- (Marketwired) -- 05/21/13 -- A new report from
The Chicago Council on Global Affairs urges the U.S. government to
focus its global food security strategy on prioritizing science,
increasing trade flows for agriculture and food, and incentivizing
greater business activity in low-income countries. The report,
Advancing Global Food Security: The Power of Science, Trade, and
Business, makes four broad policy recommendations composed of 21
specific actions to define the next steps for U.S. global food
Key recommendations include:
-- Appoint the Vice President to lead the whole-of-government approach for
food security, and, in this role, to chair a National Science Commission
on Global Food Security.
-- Double U.S. investments in agricultural and food research between now
and 2023. Focus research dollars on priorities that will be most
important to meeting future demand: equipping agriculture in the U.S.
and in low-income countries to be resilient to water shortages, climate
change and weather variability; aligning agricultural production and
nutrition goals; and ensuring agricultural production builds, not harms,
the natural resource base.
-- Pass authorizing legislation that formalizes a U.S. commitment to food
security through agricultural development.
-- Increase funding for global agricultural development to build research
and extension capacity in low-income countries.
-- Reform food aid by moving to a cash-based system and ending
-- Leverage the Trans-Pacific Partnership and U.S.-EU Free Trade Agreement
to remove barriers to agriculture and food trade.
-- Create more incentives for business investment in low-income countries
by reducing regulatory barriers and increasing lending for agricultural
"The recommendations also include many no-cost and low cost options,"
said Dan Glickman, former U.S. secretary of agriculture and co-chair
of the group that signed the report. "While we realize that the
current debt and deficit challenge makes this a difficult time for
Congress to increase spending, failing to address the problems that a
dynamic agriculture is facing will place our economic and national
security interests at great risk. Making the investments now is the
most prudent course of action for America and the world."
A bipartisan group of agriculture, development and U.S. foreign
policy experts developed the recommendations. The group found that a
U.S. global food security strategy focused on science, trade and
business would alleviate poverty, support stability and economic
development, and bring benefits to U.S. farmers, businesses and
"Growth in the agriculture sector is twice as effective at reducing
poverty as growth in other sectors," said Catherine Bertini, former
executive director of the UN World Food Program and the group's
co-chair. "A global food security strategy centered on agricultural
development will alleviate poverty, guard the world's natural
resource base, make agriculture more resilient to climate change and
contribute to economic growth and social stability in low-income
The study finds that although there has been progress in advancing
global food security, investments in science need to be ramped up to
increase production sustainably and nutritiously. Innovations
especially need to be targeted to smallscale farmers in developing
countries, whose productivity must be increased if the world is to
raise food production by 60 percent by 2050.
The report is being released today at The Chicago Council's annual
Global Food Security Symposium in Washington, DC. U.S. Secretary of
Agriculture Tom Vilsack, USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah, CARE
President and CEO Helene Gayle, and CEO of FEED Lauren Bush Lauren
will deliver keynote addresses. Event sponsors include Abbott,
DuPont, Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy, and Monsanto Company. Watch
live streaming video of the event beginning at 8:30 am EDT at
thechicagocouncil.org/livestream and follow @GlobalAgDev and
#globalag for updates.
About The Chicago Council on Global Affairs
The Chicago Council on Global Affairs, founded in 1922, is a
prominent, independent and nonpartisan organization committed to
influencing the discourse on global issues through contributions to
opinion and policy formation, leadership dialogue, and public
learning. Long known for its studies of American public opinion on
foreign policy matters, the Council also contributes to discussions
of critical global issues through studies, task force reports and
leadership dialogue. The Chicago Council's Global Agricultural
Development Initiative provides policy analysis and recommendations
on U.S. global agricultural development policies. Follow @globalagdev
and sign up for the Global Food for Thought news brief at
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CONTACT: Samantha Skinner
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