The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations with the mandate to combat hunger and ensure food security. It aims to raise levels of nutrition, improve agricultural productivity, and better the lives and livelihoods of rural populations as well as to contribute to the growth of the world economy. Contrary to general perception, FAO is neither a donor nor a lending agency. Rather, FAO is committed to providing high quality technical expertise and assistance in agriculture, forestry, fisheries and food.
In Vietnam, FAO began operations in 1978. At first, Vietnam faced considerable hardships caused by food deficit, isolation from the world and limited channels to development assistance. Therefore, FAO’s priorities were to restore development and to help the Government in rebuilding institutions and capacity in agriculture. From the 1990s, the focus has expanded to policy advice mainly on planning and strategies to complement the provision of technical assistance. The overall objective is to enhance the capacity of the agricultural sector to respond to the challenges and opportunities posed by the new market environment. Within this mandate, it seeks to promote new livelihood options via diversified commercial agriculture, income-generating strategies, introduction to modern technologies and household food security for the rural communities whose main economic activity is agriculture.
To date, FAO has been involved in the implementation of more than 400 projects in the areas of sustainable agricultural development, food security and nutrition, forestry and fisheries. It endeavours to ensure that the benefits of its work are shared evenly among the people in project areas reaching the poorest and most vulnerable. FAO considers rural space and rural development as multi-faceted, incorporating economic, social and environmental dimensions. As a result, the scope of the current work is extensive, ranging from Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) control and prevention, Integrated Pest Management (IPM) and Farmer Field School, the control of other animal diseases, national capacity building in food quality and safety, sustainable forest management, aquaculture management and conservation, emergency relief to the support for agriculture-related studies and policy-oriented research.
Aside from the sharing of technical and policy expertise, the FAO country office in Vietnam intends to serve as a knowledge network on the issues of food and agriculture encompassing the farmers, policy-makers, donors, research communities and general public via our website, newsletters, reports, books, guidelines and other forms of publications.