The first edition of FAO's World Fisheries and Aquaculture Atlas CD-ROM is being launched at the Conference on Responsible Fisheries in the Marine Ecosystem, taking place 1-4 October in Reykjavik, Iceland.
Based on the broad expertise of the FAO Fisheries Department, the Atlas presents a comprehensive and global view of capture and aquaculture fisheries. Using both published and original material, it touches on all aspects of fisheries - from technology and trade to research and resources - and addresses a broad range of policy issues such as ecosystem management, safety at sea and biotechnology.
Today, fisheries and related industries provide a livelihood for up to 400 million people worldwide. Vital to the poorest, fisheries contribute significantly to world food security and account for over US$50 billion in international trade.
The World Fisheries and Aquaculture Atlas CD-ROM contains over 300 original articles and is illustrated with hundreds of images, graphs, maps and fact sheets. In addition, 5000 links to other documents and Web sites provide a network of easily accessible, relevant and updated material. The CD-ROM will be published at least every two years for distribution at the biennial meeting of the FAO Committee on Fisheries as a companion to the FAO publication The State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture. Future editions will include other language versions.
28 September 2001
FAO honours film on coping with AIDS
A documentary film about the effects of AIDS on young people in South Africa has received the first-ever FAO Special Award at the annual Prix Italia media and broadcasting awards ceremony in Bologna. FAO Director-General Jacques Diouf presented the trophy for "Together we can: South Africa's youth against AIDS" to the film's producer and co-director Jacqueline Fox.
In discussing the importance of the prize, Mr Diouf praised the media who "reach the hearts and minds of millions of people. It is there where you have a precious role to play in the global endeavour against hunger and poverty." Of the 36 million people living with AIDS worldwide, an overwhelming 95 percent live in developing countries, putting a huge strain on agriculture and household food security.
The film was inspired by the short life of South African Nkosi Johnson, who became a symbol of hope for people suffering from AIDS. The film travels to hospitals, orphanages and schools, exploring how the youth of South Africa are trying to break the taboo surrounding the disease.
The award was created out of a partnership between FAO and the national Italian television company, RAI. According to the international jury for this year's prize, films were sought that offered "insights and an ethical dimension, arousing sentiments and behaviour reflecting human solidarity, appealing to a sense and thirst for justice." The jury championed the film for showing that human touch can bring home a message of hope.
27 September 2001
FAO launches biotechnology Web site
FAO has recently launched a Web site highlighting the role of biotechnology in food and agriculture. The site presents an overview of FAOís activities in the area, including the organizationís official statement on biotechnology. It also provides an introduction to biotechnology in the agro-industry, crop, fisheries, forestry and livestock sectors and a list of news items and events. In addition, the site contains an e-mail forum on biotechnology in food and agriculture, a biotechnology glossary and links to other relevant sites.
Biotechnology is a collection of diverse tools that are increasingly being used in agriculture, forestry, fisheries and nutrition. In line with its mandate, FAO can provide its member countries with policy advice on biotechnology issues related to food and agriculture, assistance on specific technologies and legal and technical advice on regulatory issues. FAO also plays an active part in exchange and dissemination of information relating to biotechnology and its potential impacts.
The biotechnology Web site, accessible from the FAO home page, is a resource for policy makers, NGOs and others interested in the subject. It is available in Arabic, Chinese, English, French and Spanish.
21 September 2001
IFPRI head wins 2001 World Food Prize
As head of IFPRI, Dr Pinstrup-Andersen has been the driving force behind the 2020 Vision Initiative, which projects world food supply and demand, trade, prices, and food security to the year 2020. It also assesses the impact of various policy actions (including trade liberalization and expanded investment in agricultural research, health care, and education) on food security and nutrition.
IFPRI, which is based in Washington, DC, is one of the 16 international agricultural research centres supported by the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR), an informal association of 58 public and private members, co-sponsored by FAO, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the World Bank. FAO hosts the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) of the CGIAR.
Since 1986, the World Food Prize has recognized outstanding contributions in any field involved in the world food supply -- food and agricultural science and technology, manufacturing, marketing, nutrition, economics, poverty alleviation, political leadership and the social sciences. The prize was established by Dr Borlaug, winner of the 1970 Nobel Peace Prize and known as the father of the "Green Revolution."
3 September 2001