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Food and agricultural industries

Agro-industries for Development (click to download)

Food and agricultural industries add value to and increase demand for farm outputs, thereby contributing to poverty reduction and food security in rural areas. They provide employment opportunities in off-farm activities such as handling, processing, packaging, storage, transportation and marketing of food and non-food agricultural products.

FAO works in consultation and in collaboration with member countries to address their specific needs related to food and agricultural industries development through the provision of advisory support, technical information and capacity building activities. Our capacity building activities are implemented through field projects and training programmes. Information and training materials cover a wide range of topics and are distributed both electronically and in hard copy, and target a diverse audience including public and private sector agencies, universities and technical schools, NGOs, researchers, trainers and various actors in the post-production chain. Micro, small and medium scale entrepreneurs, who are the main processors of food and agricultural products in developing countries, are the primary beneficiaries of our direct technical assistance provided at field level.

A broad range of food commodities are covered such as: grains and pulses; oilseeds and nuts; fruits and vegetables; roots and tubers ; meat and dairy products; honey and sugar; spices and stimulants. Apart from the primary processed forms of these products, support is also provided to industries involved in secondary or downstream processing, for example the production of starch and dextrins.

Our interventions involving non-food agricultural materials seek to create diversification options for small-scale producers and maximize opportunities for employment and income generation offered by the abundant raw materials found in developing countries. Three broad areas are covered:

  • Processing and utilization of residues, by-products and wastes produced in processing operations further upstream in the value chain. Examples include: rice straw and husks; sugar cane bagasse; animal hides, skins and hair; and organic wastes for biogas production.
  • Industries for processing  natural fibres.
  • Production of bio-energy from oil crops, sugar and starch crops.

The Agro-industries Fora

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