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Monthly Archives: October 2018

World Food Day: Gate Keepers’ Report And Food Security In Nigeria — Leadership Newspaper

World Food Day: Gate Keepers’ Report And Food Security In Nigeria — Leadership Newspaper

My dear readers; permit me to digress from continuation of my last week article on recognition of 21st Century Inventors to discuss on “World Food Day celebration, Gate Keepers’ Report and their implications to Food Security in Nigeria”. This topic is apt at the moment to remind my fellow citizens of the impending food insecurity threat to our dear nation, Nigeria.

Tuesday, 16th October 2018 was a World Food day globally celebrated on annual basis in many countries to remind nations on the devastating effects of hunger, poverty and squalour. Nigeria joined other nations to mark the day at the National Agricultural Show Complex, Km 28, Abuja – Keffi Express way, Nasarawa State. National Agricultural Foundation of Nigeria (NAFN), a forerunner NGO has annually been organising the event in Nigeria in collaboration with Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD).

World Food Day (WFD) provides opportunity for each country to assemble its stakeholders for conferences, symposia, and exhibitions as well as examines the different strategies adopted to reduce hunger and poverty. WFD is globally celebrated every year on 16 October in honour of the date of the founding of the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations, which was formally established in 1945. The day is celebrated widely by many other organisations concerned with food security, including the World Food Program and the International Fund for Agricultural Development. FAO’s Member Countries at the Organisation’s 20th General Conference established WFD in November 1979.

The Hungarian Delegation, led by the former Hungarian Minister of Agriculture and Food, Dr Pál Romány, played an active role at the 20th Session of the FAO Conference and suggested the idea of celebrating the WFD worldwide. It has since been observed every year in more than 150 countries, raising awareness on the critical issues behind poverty and hunger. The occasion is also used to showcase innovations and inventions made by researchers, technicians and craftsmen on the improvement of agricultural productivity.

Two years after the first WFD, the event was assigned a “theme” in 1981 and since then, “theme” was annually assigned to each WFD. The theme highlights common areas of concerns needing attention and action of policy makers, investors and the general public, examples; the theme of WFD of 2017 was “Change the future of migration. Invest in food security and rural development” while that of 2016 was “Climate change: Climate is changing, Food and agriculture must too”. The theme of World Food Day 2015 was “Social Protection and Agriculture: Breaking the Cycle of Rural Poverty” and so on.

This year’s (2018) theme was “Our Actions are our Future. A Zero Hunger by the year 2030 is possible.” This is a smart way of sensitising the World to work towards eradicating hunger. The key words of 2018 theme, “achievement of zero hunger” gingered every stakeholder at the venue of the celebration on that day. According to FAO, “Zero hunger means working together to ensure everyone, everywhere, has access to the safe, healthy and nutritious food they need. To achieve it, we must adopt a more sustainable lifestyle, work with others, share our knowledge and be willing to help change the world – for the better”.

FAO further reminded the audience, “After a period of decline, world hunger is on the rise again”. According to the latest FAO 2018 State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World report, “Today, over 820 million people are suffering chronic undernourishment, conflict, extreme weather events linked to climate change, economic slowdown and rapidly increasing overweight and obesity levels are reversing progress made in the fight against hunger and malnutrition”. Now is the time to get back on track. The world can achieve Zero Hunger if we join forces across nations, continents, sectors and professions. Today, 70 per cent of the world’s poor live in rural areas where people’s lives depend wholly on agriculture, fisheries or forestry. “That’s why Zero hunger calls for a transformation of rural economy” as stated by FAO.

In Nigeria, the 2018 World Food Day was celebrated with chain of events involving the stakeholders. The events included a five km road-walk; a symposium on Zero Hunger; a book/photo exhibition, National Agricultural Show and Public presentation of 2018 Agricultural Performance Survey (APS) Report. The symposium was done on October 12, which was titled the same as the 2018 WFD theme: “Our Actions are Our Future: A Zero Hunger World by 2030 is Possible”. The minister of State for Agriculture and Rural Development, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri was the special guest of honour at the event. He reaffirmed the federal government’s commitment to achieve Zero Hunger within the next few years.

The Nation, a national newspaper, quoted the minister, “In the next 12 years, Nigeria will join the league of nations who would be able to feed the world” – and make zero hunger. While we must join the minister to drum up the music of hopes as we move into the future, we may however, pause and ask how herculean the task to end hunger in Nigeria is? What is the performance of agriculture in the current 2018 wet season? The last question is answered by the Agricultural Performance Report (APS), which was presented to the public as part of 2018 World Food Day celebration in Nigeria. The Minister of FMARD, Chief Audu Ogbeh, who was represented by the permanent secretary, Dr Abdulkadir Muazu, officially performed the public presentation of the APS.

APS is one of the national mandates of National Agricultural Extension and Research Liaison Services (NAERLS). NAERLS) and is under the auspices of two organisations – FMARD and Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria (ABU). In NAERLS and two other ABU-based National Agricultural Research Institutes; IAR and NAPRI, there is a symbiotic relationship between FMARD and ABU, which brings out the best out of NAERLS. Thus, one hand, NAERLS personnel have the opportunity to interface with both undergraduate and postgraduate students of ABU in teaching and research activities. On the other hand, the same personnel are involved in agricultural extension activities thereby interfacing with field staff of the 37 ADPs across the nation. Consequently, there is no conflict of interests between the two supervisory bodies of NAERLS as they are both achieving their goals.

While FMARD is achieving agricultural extension policy and direction through NAERLS, ABU uses both the human resources and infrastructure of NAERLS for teaching, learning and community services. NAERLS, being an extension service provider, has distinctive position among the National Agricultural Research Institutes in the country. Thus, NAERLS carries out numerous annual activities with APS being one of them.The objectives of the 2018 APS are crops’ performance assessment during wet season; crops production forecasts; identification of constraints to increased agricultural productivity and effective extension delivery service. Another objective of APS is to provide feedbacks on field situation and farmers’ problems needing research, and attention of policy makers for improved research and policy performance.

The methodology of the APS involved the use of Participatory Rural Appraisal (PRA) technique. This includes questionnaire/checklists administration, farm visits/observations, interviews with farmers and Ministry/ADP officials /reports of technology review meetings. A total of 20 multi-disciplinary teams of three scientists each constituting 60 scientists conducted the survey across the 36 states, federal establishments and Federal Capital Territory. In each state, two communities were selected from two LGAs in two selected agricultural zones for field evaluation. From each community, five farmers were interviewed in addition to focused group discussions held at every site. In all, interactions were held with over 1,000 individual farmers and 74 different farmers groups.Data capture from the farmers was done electronically using Android Tablets.

Extensive discussions were also held with the ADP staff, ministry officials and staff of other relevant agencies. Final wrap-up sessions to validate the data generated and findings were held at the end of the exercise with officials of the State ADP and Ministry of Agriculture. The 2018 APS also captured information on Agricultural Project Interventions at the level of the Local Government Areas through states’ ministries of local government across the nation. Major findings of the 2018 APS will be discussed next week.

Food Security in Northern Canada

Food Security in Northern Canada

It is well established that in northern Canada food insecurity is a serious problem that affects the health and wellness of Northerners, with implications for Canada more broadly. While food insecurity is not a new problem, the ways in which it is experienced in northern Canada are highly contemporary. Processes of colonialism and environmental dispossession, rapid and sometimes unpredictable environmental change, economic transitions and material poverty, changing demographics, and current logistical challenges are some of the factors that shape this modern version of food insecurity.

In 2014 the CCA published . The report addresses the diversity of experience that northern First Nations, Inuit, and Métis households and communities have with food insecurity. It provides data on the various rates of food insecurity, explores how different factors affect food security, and describes the health and social effects of rapid social, environmental, and economic transitions.

Beyond the price of groceries, food security is a complex issue of human health and well-being that requires multiple solutions. To understand food security in northern Aboriginal environments, the Panel took a holistic approach. This people-centred framework presents the many factors that influence life in the North. For example, environmental change poses a specific threat to traditional/country food sources in the North because it affects wildlife abundance and availability, the extent to which humans can safely access wild food, and the safety and quality of the food. Environmental change also affects the logistics of store-bought food. While shipping food may become easier in some cases, less predictable freezing and thawing of the sea ice can affect access to ports, and melting permafrost can interfere with airport infrastructure and the safety of ice roads.

The Panel concluded that lasting solutions require collaboration and the continued involvement of those most affected by food insecurity: people living in the North. Although published in 2014, the report continues to offer policy-makers a holistic starting-point for discussion and problem-solving. It also provides evidence and options to researchers and communities engaging in local responses.

Director, Institute of Food Security at the Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi

Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi, Borno – Applications are invited from suitably qualified candidates for the vacant position below:

Job Title: Director, Institute of Food Security

Location: Makurdi, Benue


  • Candidates must possess a Doctorate degree in the relevant field(s) with a minimum of 15 years post-qualification experience in teaching and research in a University or similar institution of higher learning.
  • Demonstrate ability to initiate, develop and supervise research projects, a good record of scholarly publications in reputable journals, a capacity for academic leadership. Registration with COREN is required for Engineers.


  • Applicants must not be more than sixty (60) years of age at the time of appointment.


  • Applicants must enjoy good health to be able to endure the rigours of the duties of the position.

Duration of Appointment

  • The appointment shall be for a single term of Five (5) years.

Conditions of Service

  • These are as approved for Federal Universities in the country and as may be modified from time to time by competent authorities.

Application Closing Date
6th December, 2018.

Method of Application

Interested and qualified candidates should forward their Applications in 12 copies with photocopies of their certificates and detailed Curriculum Vitae indicating:

  • Full Names
  • Date and Place of Birth
  • Permanent Address
  • Marital Status
  • Nationality
  • Number and Ages of Children
  • Educational institutions attended with dates and qualifications obtained, including membership/fellowship of relevant professional bodies.
  • Work Experience and Positions held with dates
  • Present Employer, Post and Salary
  • List of Publications, if any
  • Other relevant activities outside current employment
  • Major professional achievements, contributions, including awards received, if any;
  • Names and Addresses of 3 Referees – one of whom should be professionally competent to assess the applicant. The referees should be requested to forward their references direct to the “Registrar, Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi.”

All applications should be addressed and sent to:
The Registrar,
Federal University of Agriculture,
P.M.B. 2373, Makurdi,
Benue State,

Note: Only applications of those who may be shortlisted for interview will be acknowledged.


Livelihoods and Food Security Technical Assistant at the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC)

The Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) is a non-governmental, humanitarian organization with 60 years of experience in helping to create a safer and more dignified life for refugees and internally displaced people. NRC advocates for the rights of displaced populations and offers assistance within the shelter, emergency food security, and water, sanitation and hygiene sectors.

We are recruiting to fill the position below:

Job Title: Livelihoods and Food Security Technical Assistant

Ref. nr.: 3961693514
Location: Miaduguri, Borno


  • NRC is looking for a Livelihoods and Food Security Technical Assistant for our field offices in Maiduguri – Borno State in Northern Nigeria. The purpose of the Livelihoods and Food Security Technical Assistant is the day to day implementation of Livelihoods and Food Security irrigation component of the EU project in Maiduguri; Biu; Damasak; Dikwa and Monguno in Borno State
  • NRC initiated country operations in Nigeria in June 2015, in order to respond to the critical and increasing needs in the country. NRC currently has a full team based in Maiduguri and a coordination office in Abuja. NRC is currently providing services across various sectors namely; Shelter and Non-Food Items (NFI); Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Promotion (WASH); Food Security; and Information, Counselling and Legal Assistance (ICLA) in order to address identified humanitarian needs
  • The Livelihoods and Food Security Technical Assistant reports to the Livelihoods and Food Security Officer.
  • Application Cover Letter Procedure: Kindly indicate position and location applied for as title of your Cover Letter. eg: “Livelihoods and Food Security Technical Assistant – Irrigation (Maiduguri)”


  • Together with Livelihoods & Food security Officers, the Assistants will be responsible for the implementation of irrigation activities on the field – mobilization of communities, irrigation development assessments and monitoring of works.
  • Carry out the selection of project beneficiaries
  • Data collection for project monitoring and evaluation.
  • Coordinate the food security activities according to strategy, proposals, budgets and plans
  • Involve and inform communities and community leaders about the activities
  • Facilitate the distribution of materials and equipment according to procedures
  • Prepare weekly progress reports and other documents as required


  • B.Sc. in Civil Engineering / Agricultural Engineering / Irrigation Engineering
  • One-year experience in the NGO sector
  • Experience as an Agricultural Extension Agent
  • Knowledge of the context in Northeast Nigeria
  • Experience from working in Food Security humanitarian/recovery context
  • Previous experience from working in complex and volatile contexts
  • Documented results related to the position’s responsibilities
  • Some knowledge of English.

Personal Qualities:

  • Planning and delivering results
  • Empowering and building trust
  • Highest standard of ethics and integrity
  • Handling insecure environment
  • Ability to work under pressure, independently and with limited supervision
  • Communicating with impact and respect: All employees of the Norwegian Refugee Council should be able to adhere to our Code of Conduct and the four organizational values: Dedicated, innovative, inclusive and accountable.

We Offer

  • Commencement: December 2018
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Salary/benefits: According to NRC’s general directions (Grade Level 4 Step 1)
  • Duty stations: Maiduguri; with 50% frequent travels. Travel outside duty stations is dependent on changing security conditions, especially for certain roads in the area.
  • Approved health certificate will be requested before contract start.
  • Application procedures and CV registration: Please note that you are required to enter the geographical location for all your previous positions while registering your CV. There is no specific field for this information in our CV form, but you can use the “Company name” field for both company and location.

Application Closing Date
2nd November, 2018.

How to Apply

Interested and qualified candidates should:


The Economist Intelligence Unit and Corteva Agriscience™, Agriculture Division of DowDuPont, Release 2018 Global Food Security Index Findings

The Economist Intelligence Unit and Corteva Agriscience™, Agriculture Division of DowDuPont, Release 2018 Global Food Security Index Findings

October 19, 2018

The Economist Intelligence Unit and Corteva Agriscience™, Agriculture Division of DowDuPont, Release 2018 Global Food Security Index Findings

Findings signal a shift toward more resilient food security measures.

WILMINGTON, Del., /PRNewswire/ — Today, Corteva Agriscience, Agriculture Division of DowDuPont, and The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), released the 2018 Global Food Security Index (GFSI) findings. The report, sponsored by Corteva Agriscience, provides a common framework for understanding the root causes of food insecurity. For the first time, Singapore claims the top spot in the 2018 GFSI ranking. Singapore sits in the top spot due in part to GDP per capita has risen nearly 30 percent since 2012, and the percentage of household expenditure that is spent on food is 6.9 percent.

In addition to the increase in GDP, Singapore also has the lowest agricultural import tariffs among all countries in the index.

GFSI ranking criteria is set by examining the dynamics of food systems and the effects of changing global environments. The GFSI is the first to examine food security through the lens of affordability, availability and quality, across a set of 113 countries, of which many have a Corteva Agriscience presence.

According to the findings, lower-middle- and low-income countries experience the most substantial gains during the past year, signaling a shift toward more resilient food security measures. Improvements in agricultural infrastructure and increased capacity to feed growing populations are credited for improvements.

Environmental Effects
In 2017, GFSI unveiled a new environmental category, recognizing the need for resource conservations, climate change adaptation and sustainable agriculture practices. Using factors such as temperature change, land deforestation and water resource depletion, the Natural Resource & Resilience category is used to measure future environmental effects on the countries in the GFSI.

Applying the Resource & Resilience category to the 2018 GFSI, the average score of higher-income countries falls further than any other income group. However, these risks pose a threat for which all countries must prepare.

“The addition of the Resource & Resilience category provides global leaders another way to measure food security, as well as think about how our actions have long-reaching consequences in terms of climate change,” said Jerry Flint, Global Initiatives & Sustainability Leader at Corteva Agriscience. “By keeping track of our exposure risk, agricultural leaders can better position themselves to weather the storm. Knowing how each of these risk factors works with each other, as well as independently, allows us to mitigate some risk and build a more resilient future.”

The GFSI concludes that global climate change is already adding uncertainty into the conditions of food production and distribution, creating new and unprecedented challenges. This uncharted territory makes anticipation difficult, resulting in the increased importance of resiliency in food systems.

Ratings Changes
Despite the 2018 GFSI improvements in food availability and affordability, the overall food quality and safety score declined, due in part to reduced diet diversification and lower protein quality. The existence of national dietary guidelines, nutritional strategies and formal grocery sectors have improved. However, findings show countries can continue to do more to ensure the safety and health of food, particularly given risks of contamination along the global food supply chain.

For the second year in a row, the United States GFSI rating dropped. Maintaining the top spot from 2012 and 2016, the United States is now tied for third with the United Kingdom. The dip in ranking reflects a slower rate of improvement (85.0 in 2018) compared to its peers, not a decline in its total score (84.6 in 2017). The country’s political stability score has declined since 2016, hindering the food security advances it made between 2016 and 2018. The threat of trade barriers could push up food costs, further affecting the score.

To explore the GFSI in detail online, visit

About Corteva Agriscience, Agriculture Division of DowDuPont                    
Corteva Agriscience, Agriculture Division of DowDuPont (NYSE: DWDP), is intended to become an independent, publicly traded company when the previously announced spinoff is complete by . The division combines the strengths of DuPont Pioneer, DuPont Crop Protection and Dow AgroSciences. Corteva Agriscience provides growers around the world with the most complete portfolio in the industry — including some of the most recognized brands in agriculture: Pioneer®, Encirca®, the newly launched Brevant Seeds, as well as award-winning Crop Protection products — while bringing new products to market through our solid pipeline of active chemistry and technologies. More information can be found at .

Follow Corteva Agriscience™, Agriculture Division of DowDuPont, on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube.

All products, unless otherwise noted, denoted with ™, ℠ or ® are trademarks or registered trademarks of DowDuPont.


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Singapore tops global index for food security, Singapore News & Top Stories

Singapore tops global index for food security, Singapore News & Top Stories

Singapore is top in the world when it comes to ensuring that its citizens have access to safe and nutritious food at affordable prices in the short and long term.

However, given that Singapore imports most of its food, climate change could disrupt its food security depending on how badly other food-producing countries are hit.

The Global Food Security Index released on Tuesday puts Singapore at No. 1, a jump of three places from last year. It is the first time it has topped the ranking since the index of 113 countries was started in 2012 by the Economist Intelligence Unit.

Ireland is in second place, with Britain and the United States in joint third.

The 113 countries were selected based on regional diversity, economic importance and population size. They were assessed on four categories – affordability, availability, quality and safety, and natural resources and resilience, which is “the ability to bounce back from a shock or disaster, ideally better off than before”.

Singapore’s high score was largely due to its strength in the affordability component of the index.

It is a high-income economy, with the report noting that its gross domestic product per capita has risen nearly 30 per cent since 2012.

It also has the lowest tariffs on agriculture imports among all 113 countries, which helps to reduce the overall cost of importing food.


  • (Scores are upon 100)

    1. Singapore: 85.9

    2. Ireland: 85.5

    3. United Kingdom: 85.0

    3. United States: 85.0

    5. Netherlands: 84.7

    6. Australia: 83.7

    7. Switzerland: 83.5

    8. Finland: 83.3

    9. Canada: 83.2

    10. France: 82.9

But the report noted that Singapore’s food security is the most susceptible to climate and natural resource risks, with the import-dependent country facing potential disruptions to its food supply.

The risks include exposure to climate changes, such as a rise in temperature, drought and flooding, and the health of land and water resources.

When those risks are taken into account, Singapore is ranked 16th, with Switzerland in the top spot.

Singapore imports more than 90 per cent of its food, according to the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority of Singapore (AVA) website. Only a small amount is produced locally – 8 per cent of vegetables, 8 per cent of fish and 26 per cent of eggs.

An AVA spokesman told The Straits Times that Singapore’s food security is vulnerable to global driving forces and trends, such as population growth, rising urbanisation and incomes, climate change, disease outbreaks and scarcity of resources.

“These trends are intensifying, and their interplay is heightening food security challenges more than ever,” the spokesman said.

Singapore’s jump in the global food security rankings comes ahead of the introduction of a new agency focusing on food safety and security here, on April 1 next year.

The Singapore Food Agency, which will take over food-related work currently done by the AVA, National Environment Agency and Health Sciences Authority, is expected to boost food safety standards for consumers and strengthen local food businesses.


AL far from food security pledge

AL far from food security pledge

Ruling Awami League did little to fulfill its much trumpeted election promise of achieving national food security though the its 2nd straight term in power ends after three months.
In the election manifesto in 2008, AL promised to ensure people’s rights to vote and food as preconditions for poverty alleviation.
Before the controversial 2014 election, the ruling AL in its manifesto announced that it achieved self- sufficiency in food production while promising nutritious food to 85 per cent people by 2021.
In the manifesto AL also promised to ensure by 2021 that each citizen consumed at least 2,122 kcal per day, being the minimum energy requirement of a healthy person.
But different studies released last year revealed that still one third Bangladesh population cannot afford enough food.
But according to food minister Quamrul Islam there is no food deficiency in the country as it was producing surplus food grains.
‘We are planning to overcome nutrition deficiency among poor people by feeding them nutritious rice,’ he said.
‘I think the government became successful in achieving national food security,’ said Quamrul.
But the International Food Policy Research Institute says that about 28 million people cannot buy enough rice to fill their stomachs.
A study, jointly conducted by Brac University and Leveraging Agriculture for Nutrition in South Asia, released last year revealed that one third of the country’s people were food deprived as they consume less than 1,800 kcal per day.
The World Food Programme said in a report released in October 2016 that one fourth of the country’s 160 million people were food insecure and hungry.
‘It is true that people do not die from hunger in Bangladesh anymore. But there is hidden hunger,’ said former Jahangirnagar University vice chancellor Abdul Bayes.
Food security means people have access to enough and safe food at affordable prices to meet their daily nutrition requirement, explains Bayes.
Bayes, director at research and evaluation division at Brac, said that the country’s food grain production increased substantially which was not enough to meet their nutrition requirements.
‘The nutrition deficiency cannot be overcome as long as the policymakers refuse to change their mindset,’ said Bayes.
He said that policymakers were still under the impression that food security was there when people had enough rice to eat.
‘They are harbouring an erroneous concept of food security that could be achieved through crop diversification. And crop diversification is the precondition,’ said Bayes.
According to Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics, in 2017, the country produced 3.96 crore tonnes of food of which 3.48 crore tonnes was rice.
According to an IFPRI report, people in Bangladesh get 71 per cent of their daily energy from rice consumption.
Nutritionists attributed Bangladesh’s widespread micronutrient deficiencies, especially among children and their moms, to lack of availability and access to non-cereal nutrient-rich foods.
That’s why Bangladesh’s one in every three, or 36 per cent children suffer from stunting.
‘Bangladesh has made tremendous achievement in food security in past few years considering that over 50 per cent children were born stunted in 2004,’ said IFPRI country representative Akhter Ahmed.
‘However, challenges remain as stunting is already very low in many Asian countries,’ said Akhter.
According to him in Sri Lanka only 11 per cent children are born with stunting.
Experts said that the situation in Bangladesh would have been better had AL ensured better food management, a major election pledge of the party.
Former Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies director general Quazi Shahabuddin said that rice price rose by 30 per cent in 2017 following flash floods due to poor government response in the aftermath of flood.
‘The government responded too late and with too little,’ said Shahabuddin.
Although the floods occurred in late March, Shahabuddin said, the government spent nearly three months to take the decision to import rice after its stock fell to record low level of below 2 lakh tonnes.
Ensuring import of food at right moment was a major election pledge of AL.
Consequently, the government had to double the price of rice for selling to the poor groups at discount prices.
But poor the people were puzzled to find the government sold to them imported sun boiled and not par boiled rice.
Since sun boiled rice is not in the food culture of Bangalis even the poor could not consume it creating a serious concern regarding the state of food security the government was trumpeting about.
The poor buyers cut on their consumption and almost a half the supplies at OMS outlets for selling at discount price remained unsold.
Different reports showed that after the floods several million people were pushed below the poverty trap and even well off villagers began to feel the bite of food insecurity.
Bedeviled by rampant corruption, the government’s OMS programme and other social safety net mechanisms came under severe criticism from the media and the human rights groups in recent years.
Government dealers opened fire on people protesting misappropriation of rice for sale at discount price. Sacks of subsidized rice were intermittently discovered stacked in private warehouses in many districts.
RAB caught truckloads of subsidized rice being stolen from the food department’s Central Storage Depot in the capital time and again.
Even the affluent were no less worried about food and they were seen struggling to have access to safe food as contamination and adulteration went unabated in food production, supply and marketing ends.
The government’s food safety campaign, which began with the setting up of Bangladesh Food Safety Authority in 2013, hardly created an impact, experts said.
Outside the capital not a single case was filed under the food safety act in five years. In the capital, only 112 cases were filed, mostly against petty sellers.
‘The government has failed to create an atmosphere conducive for the food safety authority to function,’ said Social Sector Management Foundation chief executive officer AM Zakir Hussain.
He said that the BFSA lacks technical capacity to operate and its field level officers are too scared to take action against businessmen.
‘The government must ensure their security before sending them against the organized business community,’ said Zakir.
Food safety campaigner Poribesh Bachao Andolon general secretary Md Abdus Sobhan expressed disappointment over BFSA’s performance.
‘The government’s drive for safe food failed to deliver,’ said Sobhan
‘They are wasting public money,’ he added.
Food minister Quamrul Islam said that ensuring safe food is a massive and priority task for the government.
‘The other Asian countries spent seven to eight years to effectively enforce safe food law,’ said Quamrul, adding ‘We are working to make people aware about how to keep food safe from production to consumption.
Regarding allegations of rampant corruption in food distribution and management, he said, ‘We are taking punitive measures against the perpetrators. We are working to improve the situation.’

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Dirty deals threaten Kenya’s food security, report says

Dirty deals threaten Kenya’s food security, report says

Dirty deals threaten Kenya’s food security, report says

A report by the Economist Intelligence Unit says land grabs are another common mechanism of corruption threatening Kenya’s food security, citing instances where backdoor deals were used to secure land.

Business Daily | 17 October 2018

Dirty deals threaten Kenya’s food security, report says

A global index has singled out Kenya as one of the countries whose food security is undermined by various forms of corruption, underlining the impact graft has had on taxpayers’ lives even as the government vows to root out the vice.

According to a report by think tank Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), land grabs are another common mechanism of corruption threatening food security, citing instances where public or private entities use backdoor deals to push favourable deals to secure land for themselves while displacing small farmers.

“Corruption at the highest levels of politics can affect entire sectors— the Kenyan government, for example, has been plagued by corruption scandals related to national grain reserves and market prices,” the EIU says in its newly released 2018 Global Food Security Index.

Kenya was ranked 87 out of 113 countries, with the report noting that a prolonged electioneering period during last year’s polls stalled economic investments in several sectors including agriculture.

“Even short-term uncertainty can take a toll, as when post-election unrest in Kenya in 2017 hurt the tourism and retail sectors and delayed infrastructure projects,” the think tank notes.

Singapore scooped the top top spot in the index that measures the affordability, safety and availability of food in 113 countries across the globe.

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    CBA third economic forum discusses food security

    CBA third economic forum discusses food security


      Commercial Bank of Africa (CBA) yesterday hosted its third Economic Forum at Serena Hotel in Nairobi. The third Economic Forum focused on Food Security and Government policies geared towards Food Security, Trade and Employment.

      The quarterly CBA Economic Forum was launched early this year with the main objective of discussing key thematic issues regarding Kenya’s economy and policies that affect businesses. The forum targets key decision makers in corporate and public institutions with the key focus being unpacking the Big Four Agenda.

      Speaking during the breakfast event, Mr. Jeremy Ngunze, Chief Executive Officer, CBA Kenya, said, “The correlation between agriculture and economic performance remains positive and strong. Agriculture remains the mainstay of our economy directly accounting for over 25% of GDP and indirectly, contributing 27% of the country’s GDP. The sector employs over 75% of the country’s work force and generates nearly half of the country’s export earnings.”

      According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), Kenya has the largest, most diversified economy in East Africa with agriculture being the backbone of the economy and also central to the country’s development strategy. More than 75 percent of Kenyans make some part of their living in agriculture, and the sector accounts for more than a fourth of Kenya’s gross domestic product (GDP).

      The role of agriculture has been crucial in economic development and poverty reduction, yet, investments in the sector remain low and volatile. According to the Africa Union Maputo declarations on Agriculture and Food Security, governments committed to investing at least 10% of their annual budgets to agriculture which will help unlock the 6.0% growth potential for the sector.

      Mr. Ngunze added, “The political goodwill by the government in transforming the sector through making food security a key pillar in the Big Four Agenda is a welcome step in the right direction. As good corporate citizens, we at CBA will partner with key players in the sector that we may collectively achieve these fundamental goals.”

      Key speakers for the event also included, Lucy Muchoki, CEO, Kenya Agribusiness and Agroindustry Alliance (KAAA), Jane Ngige, CEO, Kenya Horticulture Council and Hasit Shah, Managing Director, Sunripe and Vertical Agro EPZ. Freight in Time & Koppert.

      Lagos government reiterates commitment to food security

      Lagos government reiterates commitment to food security

      Lagos State Government has declared its commitment to food security in the state by ensuring optimum utilization of its natural endowment in the agricultural sector.

      Governor Akinwunmi Ambode, stated this while speaking at this year’s World Food Day celebration organised by the state in conjunction with the British American Tobacco of Nigeria Foundation (BATNF) at the Police College in Lagos.

      Ambode who was represented by Tunji Bello, Secretary to the state government, said the state would also not relent in providing necessary support to increase the productive capacity of farmers and other key players in the Agric value chain towards achieving a zero hunger world by 2030.

      He said that the theme of this year’s celebration which is “our actions are our future: A zero hunger world by 2030 is possible” is reassuring particularly against the backdrop of recent report which indicated that 821million people were afflicted with hunger in 2017. This figure shows a rise in the world hunger index and a setback in the progress that the world has recorded in the fight against hunger and malnutrition in the last 10 years.”

      Ambode also stated that climate change, in the form of increased intensity of heat and flood being experienced in different countries around the world including Nigeria had been identified as a major contributing factor and threat to the achievement of global objectives on food security.

      “The greatest challenge to achieving sustainable reduction in food shortage therefore remains our ability to mitigate the effect of climate change and also develop new farming strategies and methods that can withstand the effect of climate change.

      This, I believe is the challenge, which the theme for this year’s celebration is calling our attention to,”

      Speaking further he said that the state is at the forefront of the efforts to ensure food security for the over 20million people in the state, adding that the state is collaborating with other states of the federation both within and outside the western geopolitical zone to develop partnership that will result in improved productivity in the agriculture value chain.

      “This collaboration has impacted positively in promoting food safety in Lagos state and Nigeria. A clear example is the Lake rice revolution which has contributed in no small measure to the significant reduction in rice importation,” he said.

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