United Nations Committee of Experts on Food Security, Agricultural and Rural Statistics (UN-CEAG)

Chair: Susana Patricia PEREZ CADENA, Deputy Director General of Economic and Agricultural Censuses, National Institute of Statistics and Geography, Mexico.

Members of the Bureau: Canada, Indonesia, Norway and FAO.

About the Committee

The United Nations Committee of Experts on food security, agricultural and rural statistics (formerly known as the Inter-Agency Expert Group on food security, agricultural and rural statistics) aims to develop and document good practices and guidelines on concepts, methods and statistical standards for food security, sustainable agriculture and rural development statistics. This Committee, formed by experts from national statistical offices, ministries of agriculture and international organizations, was created under the umbrella of the UN Statistical Commission at its 43rd session in 2012.

The Committee is represented by an elected Chair, which has the responsibility to develop, in close cooperation with the Bureau (designated committee members) and the Secretariat (the Office of the Chief Statistician of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations), a multi-year strategic framework and an annual programme of work for the Committee, monitor progress of the various components of the programme and set the agenda for the meetings. The Committee’s activities and tasks are organized by task teams, for which members of the Bureau will be assigned as leads and follow the implementation of the various programmes of work more closely. All members of the Committee will meet at least once a year in the margins of the UN Statistical Commission.

Finally, the UN-CEAG regularly reports progress on its programme of work to the UN Statistical Commission. More information on the mandate, governance arrangements and the functioning of the Committee can be found in its terms of reference.

Collaboration with technical experts groups

In the implementation of its mandate, the Committee will liaise with other relevant technical expert groups and groups/bodies under the umbrella of the Statistical Commission, mainly

Programme of Work (2020–2023)

The Programme of Work (2020–2023) of the Committee was endorsed by the UN Statistical Commission at its 51st session and focuses on four activities: (i) the development of national data quality assurance frameworks for agricultural statistics, (ii) the development of methods and standards for the use of alternative data sources in producing food and agricultural statistics at the national and international levels, (iii) the development of innovative methods for producing real-time statistics at the country level, and (iv) conducting methodological research in the domain of food security statistics to further improve their relevance and accuracy.

As of September 2020, three task-teams, composed of members of the Committee, were created to carry out substantive work on the following topics: 1) Food security and food consumption measurement; and 2) National Quality Assurance Framework for Agricultural Statistics and 3) the Use of Earth Observation data for Agricultural Statistics. For the latter, the Committee’s contribution to the development of methods for the Use of Earth Observation data for Agricultural Statistics will be delivered through a joint task team composed of members of the UN-CEAG and of the task team on Satellite Imagery and Geo-Spatial Data for agricultural statistics under the umbrella of the Global Working Group on Big Data for official statistics.

Main achievements (2013–2019)

The main achievements of the Committee so far are as follows:

E/CN.3/2020/13, para. 67