C. Programme of work and budget, 1970-71
377. The Conference discussed the Programme of Work and Budget as presented by the Director-General including the revisions in Addenda 1 and 2 to C 69/3, and in the light of the recommendations of the Fifty-Second and Fifty-Third Sessions of the Council.
378. It noted that the Director-General had originally proposed in his Programme of Work and Budget for 1970-71 a budget of $73 460 000 which represented an increase of $12 964 000, or 21.4 percent, over the 1968-69 approved budget as adjusted, after adding withdrawals from the Working Capital Fund estimated at $635 000 in document C 69/3. Following the proposals of the Programme and Finance Committees at their 1969 Spring sessions which included a reduction in travel by $100 000, general operating expenses by $100 000 and of the provision for loss on exchange by $35 000 and revised arrangements with UNDP for cost-sharing of country representatives, the Director-General submitted revised estimates amounting to $71 325 000. The Fifty-Second Session of the Council had recommended to the Conference a budget level of $71 325 000 (with several members reserving their position), subject to any saving which might be proposed in consultation with the Finance Committee. The Director-General accordingly again reviewed the Programme of Work and Budget, as a result of which he came forward with certain additional proposals for savings, but at the same time he felt that some minimal strengthening was needed in selected areas of FAO's work to maintain a better balance in the programme. The revised budget level finally proposed by the Director-General in document C 69/3 Add. 2 was $70 568 000. This represented an increase of $10 557 000 over 1968-69 as adjusted, representing a 17.6 percent increase composed of 9.8 percent for mandatory increases and 7.8 percent for expansion. The Fifty-Third Session of the Council had reviewed these final revisions and had recommended to the Conference the acceptance of the Director-General's proposal, i. e. a budget level of $70 568 000 for the biennium 1970-71.
379. The Director-General had informed the Conference that the budget proposals were extremely tight and the margin for adjustment was extremely small, especially in view of the fact that resources for 46 professional posts in the field and 30 at headquarters were being redeployed to accommodate certain new high priority activities such as those in the Areas of Concentration, strengthening of regional offices, and the financing of 27 senior agricultural advisers/country representatives from the FAO budget.
380. The Conference recalled that during the past three biennia a number of adjustments had been made shortly after the Conference session, partly in order to accommodate suggestions and recommendations for expanded activities which had been made by the Conference. Both the Programme and Finance Committees had been disturbed by this practice. The Council at its Fifty Second Session "agreed with the recommendations of the Programme and Finance Committees that the Programme of Work and Budget as presented by the Director-General and approved by the Conference, should be considered first priority for implementation and that additional proposals recommended by the Conference (subject to the Director-General finding savings) should not be considered before the first year of the biennium was over so that only genuine savings which developed in the first year could, if necessary, be used to fund such proposals. A few members had felt, however, that a more flexible approach should be taken and that it should be left to the Director-General to decide what proposals could be implemented during the first year." The Conference while endorsing this proposal also urged the need for some flexibility on the part of the Director-General.
381. Several delegates expressed the view that there should have been a better balance between the technical and economic and social activities of the Organization, and an indication of greater concentration of "priority within priorities".
382. The Conference however noted the view expressed by the Fifty-Second Session of the Council that it was important to bear in mind that because of redeployment of staff and resources as a result of the reorganization, and also of the requirements of budget presentation, the provisions in some chapters showed an apparent reduction (due to transfer of funds to other chapters), whereas in fact total provision in the budget as a whole for the activities relating to these chapters in most cases showed an increase and in no case would there be a decrease in programme activities.
383. With regard to broad policies and proposals for action in the technical, economic and social fields, the views of the Conference, especially on interdisciplinary matters, were already recorded in the sections of the present Report dealing with the Review of Field Programmes and the Areas of Concentration In so far as specific proposals by organizational units were concerned, the Conference recognized that most of the technical divisions carried a large volume of field activities and the consequential workload Also in keeping with the overall policy and strategy of the Organization, a large part of the programme of the divisions, and especially the proposed expansion, was in the five Areas of Concentration.
384. The Conference was of the view that the presentation of future budgets should be substantially on a programme basis, and, wherever possible, should have a set of time targets; and noted that the Director-General proposed to adopt this approach in preparing the Budget for 1972-73.
D. Agriculture department
385. The Conference recognized that many of the problems dealt with throughout this department required an integrated or inter-sectorial approach, and noted with satisfaction the continuous efforts made by the department to link up and coordinate related activities of the five divisions within the department, and to maintain close collaboration with other segments of the Organization as well as with other United Nations agencies and international organizations.
386. In view of the importance of science and research to agricultural development, the Conference stressed the need for FAO not only to continuously play an important role in the coordination of research, in the application of results and in the training of personnel, but also to intensify its assistance to Member Nations in this area, especially in relation to the identification of research needs and the implementation of research programmes Contacts with scientific communities should be strengthened and the possibility of introducing new scientific developments, such as space technology, into agricultural research should be constantly explored.
387. The Conference welcomed the proposed increased emphasis on conservation of natural resources including the proper utilization of elements in the biosphere, with the development and conservation of soil and water, improved utilization of grasslands, protection against pollution and activities aimed at the preservation of genetic resources of plants and livestock.
388. The Conference felt that the programme of the Agriculture Department as a whole was well balanced in the light of the resources available and the work to be done. Many delegates favoured an increase in the resources to be allocated in future biennia.
389. Regarding the Animal Production and Health Division, the Conference emphasized not only the importance of livestock production but also the need for continuation of the comprehensive disease control programmes
390. While noting the importance of current activities to increase the availability of milk products by utilizing the current surpluses of skim milk powder and of butter oil, the Conference urged that special attention be given simultaneously to develop livestock and dairy production in developing countries.
391. Some delegates urged the need to align the work of the Committee on the Code of Principles Concerning Milk and Milk Products and Related Standards with the programme of the Codex Alimentarius. In this connexion it was stressed that necessary attention should be given to the standards on milk and milk products already accepted by the Committee on the Code of Principles.
392. The Conference noted the successes which had been achieved in poultry and egg production and considered that the selection of suitable breeds should cover a wider spectrum than at present. Guidance and assistance were needed by many developing countries in this particular field which could make a notable contribution to closing the protein gap.
393. Several delegates felt that the Organization should be able to provide prompt assistance in diagnosis and in the provision of prophylactic and therapeutic materials under emergency conditions of disease outbreaks. The threat of sudden and serious outbreaks of animal diseases in developing countries and the consequent disruption of the livestock industry, is one which should closely engage the attention of the Organization. In this connexion, the need for high-level animal health expertise in the Headquarters staff was again emphasized.
394. The Conference emphasized the urgent need in many developing countries for trained staff in animal production and animal health at the intermediate and lower levels, and therefore of the importance of training programmes including regional training centres and fellowships in these fields.
395. The Conference emphasized the close association between the work of the Plant Production and Protection Division in improving pastures and fodder production, and the efforts of the Animal Production and Health Division to extend and improve livestock production under range conditions, and considered that the work of the divisions in these areas should be extended consistent with available resources.
396. The Conference recognized the place of nuclear techniques as one of the tools in agricultural research and development, and noted that the Joint FAD/IAEA Division of Atomic Energy in Food and Agriculture was concerned with nuclear applications in such fields as soil fertility and moisture, crop improvement, plant and animal protection, pesticide residues and food preservation which were in fact subject matters dealt with primarily by other FAO divisions which called for a high degree of cooperation and joint programming between the Joint Division and the other divisions of FAO.
397. The Conference was informed of the recent formation of the European Society for Nuclear Agriculture. While noting the initial cooperation and collaboration of the Joint Division with this society, the Conference urged that the cooperation be further strengthened in efforts to assist developing countries in the utilization of nuclear techniques in their agricultural research and development programmes
398. The Conference recognized the role the new Agricultural Services Division had to play in the transformation of subsistence farming to commercial agriculture, and many delegates drew also attention to its large responsibilities for the execution of field programmes
399. The Conference stressed the need for assistance in the establishment of processing facilities both at the national and at the regional level, for export purposes as well as for import substitution. Special emphasis in this connexion was placed on tropical products such as cocoa, coffee, oil palm, fibres and fruit and vegetable crops and on by-products utilization.
400. The Conference recognized the usefulness of the work with regard to mechanization, dry-land farming, farm management and farm management training. Many delegates placed special emphasis on post-harvest drying, storage and transport problems and on the needs for more mechanization and adapted equipment. Attention was drawn to the desirability of including in subsequent programmes more specific reference to work on animal drawn implements and tillage practices.
401. Some delegates felt that the Production Economics and Farm Management Service should be located in the Economic and Social Department as the work of this service as defined would not be separable from agricultural extension and land settlement. The Conference was informed that the placement of this service in the Agriculture Department was made as part of the reorganization; the reason for the placement was that production economists and farm management specialists were dependent on the technical data that were primarily supplied by the other three divisions in the department, namely, the Plant Production and Protection Division, the Animal Production and Health Division and the Land and Water Development Division.
402. The Conference expressed general agreement and support of the proposed programme of work and budget of the Agricultural Services Division. Some delegates noted that the presentation of the programme seemed to be more an expression of principle and aims than a concise explanation of detailed objectives to be accomplished within the biennium. The Conference was informed that the programme of the division was compiled very shortly after the formation of the division in 1968 at which time specific activities could not yet be entirely delineated. However constant review and tightening of the programme should result in a currently more realistic, definitive programme which would be reflected in subsequent programme of work and budget documents.
403. The Conference noted the importance of the programme of work of the Land and Water Development Division under the Areas of Concentration, as well as its field programme, in view of the growing interest of developing countries in the assessment, development and use of these basic resources.
404. The Conference also noted the active participation of the division in the preparation of the Indicative World Plan. The Conference noted that the division was giving particular attention to the management and conservation of soil and water resources both with regard to their impact on high-yielding varieties and on war on waste. However, it emphasized/hat the division should concentrate more on the exploitation of new natural resources, recognizing that agricultural production in a number of areas could still be increased by use of virgin lands or previously unused supplies of ground-water.
405. The Conference noted the division's increasing activities particularly in the field projects concerning irrigation, drainage, water logging and salinity, soil conservation; some delegates showed interest to participate in meetings dealing with soil correlation and interpretation. Several delegates referred to the important work being carried out under the FFHC Fertilizer Programme in their countries, whereby trials, demonstrations, pilot schemes for credit and distribution were undertaken.
406. The Conference noted with interest the increasing attention being given by the division to the conservation and development of natural resources and particularly to the integrated appraisal and use of natural resources for agricultural development.
407. The Conference was informed that the Soil Data Bank would contain soil profile data, measured data on soil characteristics and soil use data - including fertilizer trials. This activity would greatly strengthen the division's ability to provide soil use interpretations to governments for agricultural production and for planning the best use of their soil resources. The Conference noted that the new post of hydrologist specialized in the use of computers was needed to act as the focal point between the universities and institutions, where new knowledge was developed in this field, and those who needed it in the field; at the present time 15 UNDP (SF) projects were applying this technique, at a total cost of US$ 600 000.
408. Regarding the proposed activities of the Plant Production and Protection Division, the Conference stressed the importance of developing the seed industry and expanding the sources of seed supply, especially in developing countries as good quality seed was essential to crop improvement. In order to provide a sound, basis for crop breeding, the Conference also suggested that the division's activities on plant introduction and seed exchange be strengthened.
409. While the Conference recognized the important contributions made by high-yielding varieties of Mexican origin, it felt that further genetic improvement of cereals should be given due attention. It was also considered necessary to preserve, evaluate and improve indigenous strains of crops and to initiate work on root and tuber crops which are of special importance to tropical areas. More emphasis should also be given to activities relating to the improvement of tropical fruit and vegetables.
410. As many countries had now gained experience in the cultivation of high-yielding varieties introduced from other regions, the Conference suggested that information on the performance of such varieties in various countries be collected and distributed to Member Nations.
411. In view of the problem arising from the introduction of crop varieties into dry areas, the Conference called attention to the need for more biometeorological data in order to assess the possibility of adaptation.
412. In view of the urgent need for increasing the supply of animal protein, the division should continually give attention to the improvement and efficient management of grasslands and fodder conservation, particularly silage.
413. In connexion with the production of high value crops, the Conference suggested that cultural techniques utilizing environmental control be studied and included in the division's programme in the future.
414. Recognizing that much experience had been gained in the implementation and application of the International Plant Protection Convention which was approved in 1951, the Conference considered it desirable to re-examine the provisions of the Convention, especially in connexion with the model phyto-sanitary certificate. To this end, the Conference expressed appreciation of the offer made by the Delegation of Canada to make available the services of a short-term quarantine expert to assist FAO in this work.
415. In view of the many problems of importance and urgency arising from the use of pesticides, the Conference emphasized the need for continuous attention to the pesticides programme, especially in relation to pesticide residues and the development of resistance by pests. Information in this area should be collected and periodically disseminated by FAO to countries concerned.
416. The Conference noted with satisfaction the progress that had been made by FAO in the development and promotion of effective and rational pest control procedures and techniques, especially through the study of resistance of pests to pesticides and the advancement of integrated pest control, and was concerned with the possible consequences arising from environmental pollution by toxic chemicals and the widespread occurrences of resistant strains of agricultural pests. Recognizing the need for strengthened international collaboration and intensified research to develop effective measures in order to overcome these handicaps and to achieve increased production through pest control, the Conference recommended that the Director-General take steps to expand the Organization's pest control programme in these areas, and establish a Headquarters post to deal jointly with problems concerning resistance of agricultural pests to pesticides and integrated pest control. The Conference further recommended that the Director-General explore fully the possibility of establishing this post in 1970-71 under the approved budget level, and should this not prove practical not later than the beginning of the biennium 1972-73.
417. The Conference noted with satisfaction the emphasis to be given to rodent control and weed control, and suggested that work concerning the control of grain-eating birds be continued under the Regular Programme on a long-term basis.
418. Considering the magnitude of post-harvest losses of crops, the Conference felt that reduction of losses of crop products in storage and transit be given increased attention, and that assistance to Member Nations in this area be intensified.
419. Subject to the above comments, the Conference approved the programme of work and budget of the Agriculture Department.
E. Economic and Social Department
420. The Conference considered the proposed activities of the Economic and Social Department as well balanced.
421. The work done by the Commodities and Trade Division in the field of commodities and trade was of a high standard and had been helpful to Member Governments in providing diagnoses of trade problems. The Conference felt that this work should be continued and become more dynamic and action-oriented. In particular, the Conference stressed the value to developing countries of the informal commodity arrangements of the type evolved by the Study Group on Hard Fibres and hoped that similar arrangements could be worked out for other commodities, e. g. rice and tea.
422. Most delegates emphasized the need for FAO to strengthen its work on trade promotion, since the expansion of trade was among the most urgent needs of developing countries; however, some delegates pointed out that the resources to be allotted to this work were too limited to enable a full range of activities to be undertaken and stressed the need for careful selection of priorities. The Conference recommended that the Commodities and Trade Division should continue and intensify its cooperation with UNCTAD and GATT.
423. The Conference noted that the collection and analysis of statistics would continue to be an important part of the Organization's commodity work, and expressed the hope that continued attention would be given to improving the coverage and timeliness at the data published, particularly with regard to rice trade and fibre consumption.
424. The Conference noted that in the Economic Analysis Division greatly increased emphasis had been placed on the evaluation and appraisal of agricultural development projects particularly under UNDP (SF) and WFP. The division would also assume a main role in collaborating with the Policy Advisory Bureau in the updating and follow-up of IWP's activities as a continuing activity. The basis of the work on appraisal and evaluation as well as that under IWP was a systematic collection and analysis of country information in the "The Regional Analysis and Appraisal Service". This work was also basic to the analysis of agricultural development for the "The State of Food and Agriculture" and other publications. To more effectively discharge these responsibilities and provide services for the Organization as a whole it was planned for 1970 to establish a country file system drawing on all sources of information. The Conference suggested their circulation to other departments and agencies. Some delegates also proposed to raise the status of the Evaluation Branch to that of a service during 1970 since evaluation was assuming much greater importance in the Organization's activities.
425. Some delegates felt that every project should have built-in evaluation procedures. It was pointed out that procedures had been established by FAO and the UNDP for periodic reviews of evaluation of every project and these procedures would be strengthened during the coming biennium. Evaluations in depth performed by the Evaluation Branch were undertaken at strategic points during implementation or at the termination of operations on a selective basis. The Conference felt that the inclusion of a representative of the country on evaluation teams would be useful. It was pointed out that where feasible this could be done and in all cases active participation of the government agencies concerned was being undertaken.
426. The Conference noted the importance of the Regional Analysis and Appraisal Service and endorsed the increased emphasis that had been placed on appraisal and evaluation of agricultural development projects. It also suggested the need for further concentration on agricultural incentives as part of agricultural development planning. Delegates, especially from the developing countries, found the Development Planning Course useful and requested that increased attention be given to specific projects in the conduct of future courses. The Conference endorsed improvements in the timing and content of The State of Food and Agriculture.
427. The Conference stressed the central role of the Rural Institutions Division in the mobilization of human resources for rural development in view of the great importance of the various fields of work covered by that division. Many delegates expressed concern over the modest budget allocation which represented a reduction from the level of the current biennium. They realized, however, that this resulted from the Director-General's policy of redeployment of headquarters resources to the field as well as of redeployment of resources within the field.
428. The Conference also felt that the structure proposed for the division was not adequate to give proper emphasis to several areas of work. Some delegates considered the division should be elevated to departmental level. The Conference invited the Director-General to take another look at its organization in the light of the discussions at the Fifteenth Session of the Conference, and taking account of the need to strengthen work on (a) cooperatives and other farmers' organizations, (b) agricultural banking and credit, (c) marketing, and (d) land reform; suggested that separate units may be considered for each of these fields; and further requested the Director-General to report to the Council on this matter.
429. The Conference strongly endorsed the division's emphasis on the integrated approach in the establishment of rural institutions and was informed that a project employing this approach was in operation in Afghanistan and that assistance had been provided to Kenya, Tunisia and Sierra Leone in preparing similar projects. The Conference stressed the need for institution building work to be adopted to the requirements of developing countries, with such adaptation perhaps calling for design of a new generation of institutions.
430. The Conference called for increased emphasis on cooperatives, including new forms of cooperation, and other forms of farmers' and farm workers' organizations to enable FAO to provide assistance to governments including playing its role in implementing the United Nations resolution on cooperatives in the Second Development Decade.
431. The Conference welcomed the stress placed on land reform in the discussion of areas of concentration. Some delegates, however, expressed disappointment that the limited resources available did not permit the Organization to play the full role assigned to it by ECOSOC. Several delegates also felt that work in the field of land settlement be strengthened considerably.
432. The Conference requested the Director-General to establish a Special Committee on Agrarian Reform, provided the necessary resources could be found. Some delegates suggested the Director-General might cover the estimated budget for such a committee either partially by savings in his proposed budget for 1970-71, from his central consultant's fund or from possible support by outside donors. It was also suggested that inquiry should be made with regard to the possibility of contributions from ILO and the United Nations. The Conference requested the Director-General to explore these possibilities for providing the necessary budgetary resources. The Conference also requested the Director-General to submit to its Sixteenth Session a summary of the report by the Special Committee on Agrarian Reform, together with a note outlining the measures which he proposed that FAO would take in pursuance of the recommendations in the report. The Conference consequently adopted the following resolution:
Recalling that FAO since 1962 has been given the major role in agrarian reform by ECOSOC (Resolution 887 (XXXIV) of 24 July 1962),which decision was endorsed by the United Nations General Assembly (Resolution 1828 (XVII) of 18 December 1962);
Recalling ECOSOC Resolution 1078 (XXXIX) on Agrarian Reform, and the work of the World Conference on Agrarian Reform held in 1966;
Considering that the Fifteenth Session of the FAO Conference has given priority to the mobilization of human resources for rural development, and considered agrarian reform as an important instrument for rural development;
Noting that, as reflected in the Fifth Report to ECOSOC on Progress in Land Reform presented to its Forty-Sixth Session in May 1969, achievements in agrarian reform have generally been modest, thus proving a drag on socio-economic development during the First Development Decade;
Noting that active preparations have been made by the United Nations for the Second Development Decade, which makes it necessary and opportune for FAO to exercise its leadership in this field;
Urges the Director-General of FAO to give higher priority in FAO's programme to agrarian reform, and to strengthen FAO's activities in this field to enable FAO to play effectively its role of leadership;
Calls upon the Director-General of FAO, and within the limits of the approved budget of the Organization, to appoint, after consultation with the United Nations and ILO, an FAO Special Committee on Agrarian Reform, to:
(a) make a critical assessment of the lessons of the First Development Decade in Agrarian Reform;
(b) recommend the required strategy, including new measures and action programmes to be adopted in agrarian reform and in the development of related rural institutions during the Second Development Decade;
(c) submit a report to the Director-General of FAO with concrete recommendations for measures and action programmes required to be adopted by FAO, either alone or in cooperation with other United Nations Agencies, in fulfilling its responsibilities during the Second Development Decade;
Requests the Director-General to bring the contents of this Report to the attention of the Secretary-General of the United Nations and heads of other United Nations Agencies concerned with this field of work.
433. The Conference took note of the Tenth Latin American Regional Conference Recommendation No. 8/68, and requested the Director-General to organize, during the period 1970-71, a Latin American seminar on the objectives, execution, institutions and finances of agrarian reform, provided the necessary resources could be found.
434. Education and training, including extension, were recognized as key elements in mobilizing human resources. The subject of motivation of extension workers called for greater attention and this would be one of the themes discussed in the World Conference on Agricultural Education and Training, to be held in Copenhagen in 1970. One delegate drew attention to the need for assistance in preparation and use of economical teaching aids. The need for cooperation between home economics and agricultural extension services in training farm women was noted.
435. The Conference stressed the need for FAO to give leadership in the organizational and administrative aspects of research organization and to assist in training research administrators.
436. The Conference expressed satisfaction at the conclusion of an agreement on cooperation between FAO, Unesco and ILO in the fields of agricultural education, science and training. The Conference approved the holding of the World Conference on Agricultural Education and Training, and welcomed the cooperation of the three agencies in this activity and in effecting the desired orientation of primary education in rural areas to the particular needs of Member Nations.
437. The Conference welcomed the study on agricultural credit guarantee funds, and noted with satisfaction the Organization's work in marketing.
438. The Conference expressed appreciation of the work in rural sociology, mentioning, in particular, the Latin American Panel on the Role of Rural Sociology in Agrarian Reform and Agricultural Extension. It requested that these activities be continued and generalized in all Member Nations and regions.
439. The Conference decided that guiding lines for the Organization's endeavour to mobilize human resources for rural development should be to apply an integrated approach as a main strategy for field programmes, to follow closely development in land reform and modernization of rural institutions in member countries and to assist governments to make greater practical efforts in this field, and finally to promote the use of cooperative methods and to foster farm organizations as means to create peoples involvement and to promote democratic procedures and social equity in the development process in conformity with the objectives of ECOSOC.
440. The Conference requested the Director-General to give highest priority to work in the mobilization of human resources in allocating additional resources either when funds become available by adjustments in the programme or from outside sources.
441. Regarding the Statistics Division, the Conference stressed the need for more emphasis on training activity in connexion with the 1970 Census of Agriculture. It recommended that in view of the importance of census data in planning the time had come for FAO to give more attention to the further development of the programme for agricultural statistics in a way which would link up the census and current statistics more closely than at present to provide continuing data on output in relation to the resources and inputs of the farm. The Conference also hoped that better compatibility would be achieved during the 1970 Census and that the publication of the Census results would be expedited.
442. The Conference stressed the need for assisting the developing countries in the collection and analysis of necessary statistical data, particularly in those countries where statistical organizations were not so well established.
443. With regard to the Nutrition Division, the Conference suggested that the work on food quality control and food standards should be further extended in the developing regions. In particular, more assistance should be given to set up food quality control laboratories and to train laboratory staff and food inspectors. When such laboratories and inspectors were available and when food laws had been drawn up, it should be possible to apply the food standards being developed through the Codex Alimentarius programme.
444. The Conference noted that several countries had requested assistance in the development of food policies and plans, and that such activities were now supported by UNDP.
445. Several delegates requested that the European Working Party on Home Economics which at present was a subsidiary body of the European Commission on Agriculture should become an independent body. Such an independent body might give particular attention to less industrialized countries in Europe. It could concentrate more freely on selected priority areas of home economics programmes such as the changing socio-economic role of farm women in the emerging structure of agriculture, the management of resources in the household and its interrelationship with economic and social development. In these programmes the importance of coordinating education, training and extension for farm women with agricultural education, training and education should not be overlooked. The new body or commission might also help, if necessary, in the preparation of training programmes for home economists in developing countries.
446. The Conference recognized the importance of nutrition and training at all levels, particularly the need to introduce human nutrition as a subject in the curricula of agricultural colleges and faculties. It stressed the importance of nutrition education of the general public in order to make population more receptive to improving their diet. While recognizing the efforts currently being made by the Organization in this field of activity, the Conference considered that further efforts should be made in the coming biennium.
447. The Conference noted that in group and industrial feeding a considerable number of projects were being implemented or requested, both in developed and developing countries. It considered that more attention than in the past should be given in the future to problems associated with the feeding of agricultural labourers.
448. The programme of planning for better family living which had been approved by the Fourteenth Session of the Conference came into operation with the assistance and support of the United Nations Population Fund. The Conference noted the activities being carried out in this field and considered that close cooperation must be maintained between FAO, the United Nations Population Fund and other interested United Nations Specialized Agencies such as WHO and Unesco.
449. The Conference noted that following recommendations of the Fourteenth Session of the Conference on FAO's involvement in the study of food and population relations, the Director-General had established a Working Group on Population Questions at the departmental level within the Economic and Social Department. In the next biennium, this Working Group would be increasingly called upon to contribute to inter-agency activities in population fields coordinated by the ACC Sub-Committee and, more particularly, in formulating action projects which were expected to be financed out of the United Nations Population Fund.
450. Subject to the various comments above, the Conference approved the programme of work of the Economic and Social Department.