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FAO Regional Office for Europe and Central Asia

Enhancing efficiency and inclusiveness of agri-food chains in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

Porec, Croatia, 17/06/2015 - 18/06/2015

Announcement and call for papers

FAO Workshop at AGRIMBA Network Congress

In collaboration with the International MBA in Agribusiness Network (AGRIMBA), the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) will hold a workshop on “Enhancing efficiency and inclusiveness of agri-food chains in Eastern Europe and Central Asia”. The workshop will be implemented as part of the programme of the International AgriMBA Congress, “Smart Agribusiness for the Society of Tomorrow“.

As the food and agricultural systems are changing in unprecedented ways, the issues of efficiency and inclusiveness of food and agriculture systems are becoming increasingly important. These changes are driven by, inter alia, increases in incomes, changing technologies, globalization, retailer demand for higher volumes of consistent and reliable products, bio-energy demand and changing demographics, including higher urbanization and the growing number of women in the workforce. This underscores the need for policies and strategies that, while promoting the desirable development outcomes, take into account issues of efficiency, equity, sustainability and inclusiveness.

The efficiency and inclusiveness of food systems is also closely linked with the levels of food losses and waste. For decades, the main focus of efforts to reduce food losses and waste was to improve postharvest operations. Only recently has it been recognized that reduction of food losses requires interventions to improve supply-utilization alignment and efficiency along the whole food supply chains. Conversely, actions that reduce food loss and waste will increase chain efficiency, while enhancing the inclusiveness and reducing pressure on natural resources.

Public and private sectors have a shared responsibility to ensure inclusive and efficient food and agricultural systems. The private sector is, increasingly, playing an important role in shaping policies, as well as trade and market structures through value chain development. Consequently, strengthening public-private dialogue and collaboration is essential for enhancing the inclusiveness and efficiency of food and agricultural systems.

 

Objective

To address aforementioned and other issues pertinent to development of agri-food chains in the Eastern Europe and Central Asia Region, FAO workshop intends to bring together industry leaders, high level policy makers, top scientists and practitioners, as well as other stakeholders to discuss and exchange the views on the regional perspectives for efficient, equitable, sustainable and inclusive agri-food chains development.

The goal is to offer a platform whereby regional experiences in agri-food chains development can be discussed, lessons can be learned and recommendations can be made to improve the effectiveness of agri-food sector promotion initiatives by governments and development organizations. Areas and topics of special interest for discussion include:

  • Value chain coordination and agri-food sector competitiveness
  • Business models for improved inclusion of small family farms in value chains
  • Public-private partnership and inclusiveness of agri-food chains
  • Reduction of food losses and waste for improved agri-food chain efficiency
  • Enabling environment and agro-industrial strategies development

Potential contributors are invited to send their proposals for papers addressing the listed topics in the form of an extended abstract. The theme and the topic of the papers should be directly related to or relevant for Eastern European and Central Asian Countries. An extended abstract (250 – 400 words) in English and a brief resume should be sent to Stjepan Tanic, Agri-food Economist, FAO Regional Office for Europe and Central Asia.

Grants

Professionals from Eastern European and Central Asian countries, who will have their contributions accepted for presentation at the workshop, will be eligible to coverage of costs of their participation in the workshop. The grants will be provided upon submission of a technical paper to be prepared in accordance with FAO guidelines. The workshop proceedings containing selected papers and a synthesis of the workshops discussions and deliberations will be published as an FAO document.

Important dates

  • Submission of an extended abstract (max 400 words): 15th March 2015
  • Communication of acceptance and grant eligibility: 30th March 2015
  • Submission of the full paper (max 7500 words): 31st  May  2015