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Wheat Rust Disease Global Programme
Wheat, grown on more than 200 million hectares of land worldwide, is a source of food and livelihoods for over one billion people in developing countries. This important commodity has been greatly affected by recent soaring food prices. Wheat prices have doubled in the last year, largely as a result of severe drought, the high cost of fuel and an increased demand for grains. In addition, plant disease has placed further constraints on wheat production. Exacerbated by climatic stress, especially in rainfed areas, the impact of disease is expected to increase.
Through its Wheat Rust Disease Global Programme, FAO is promoting global action in an attempt to prevent a potential wheat production crisis. The Programme’s goal is to contribute to global food security through the prevention and management of emerging wheat rust diseases and the enhancement of wheat productivity. To achieve this goal, FAO is working in close collaboration and partnership with national governments, International Agricultural Research Centres and other international institutions.
The Wheat Rust Disease Global Programme emphasizes regional and international cooperation and information sharing. FAO is well positioned to lead such international efforts through its status as a neutral international forum and through its linkages with rural communities, national governments, regional bodies, international agriculture research and development institutions and the donor community.