Repositioning family farming at the centre of agricultural, environmental and social policies in national agendas is a top priority at the UN's FAO. That has been the focus of the International Year 2014. So just what are the challenges faced by smallholders and what are the rewards? This is an insight into their lives and work from four countries and four continents.
Published on 16/10/2014

Audio and video

Family Farmers + You = A Well Nourished World
Food Tank's new video, produced in collaboration with Greener Media, reveals that when family farmers have the right tools, they have limitless potential. (Food Tank/Greener Media)
Published on 28/02/2014
Priority issues for Near East food and agriculture brought to the table
A three-day technical meeting has come to a close for the Regional Conference for the Near East and North Africa (NERC32). During the conference, government ministers and senior officials from countries across the region reviewed the overall state of food and agriculture. They also discussed urgent issues facing countries, including the development of a strategy for sustainable water management, as the region faces what may be the most severe intensification of water scarcity in its history. The agenda also focused on reducing food losses and waste in the region; ensuring gender equality in agriculture and the rural sector; and, other priority areas for FAO’s work over the next two years. A two-day Ministerial Meeting opens today at FAO headquarters for Ministers from member countries across the region.
Published on 28/02/2014
Small-scale fishers need support to enter regional and international markets
Nicole Franz is FAO’s Fishery Planning Analyst. In the following interview she explains the main challenges facing small scale fishers and the reasons preventing them from receiving the support they need.
Published on 28/02/2014
Séminaire international sur l’agriculture familiale: discours de clôture
Mercredi 25 février 2014 au Salon international de l’agriculture, l’agriculture familiale était à l’honneur avec le séminaire organisé par les Jeunes Agriculteurs, l’AFDI (Agriculteurs français et développement international) et le Ministère de l’agriculture, de l’agroalimentaire et de la forêt. Stéphane Le Foll, Ministre français de l’agriculture, de l’agroalimentaire et de la forêt, a clôturé le séminaire.
Published on 28/02/2014
In the words of family farmers: The Gambia
Almost half of the world's agricultural workers are women - but in Africa, less than 15% of them own land. Rice farmer Awa Jagne explains what it means to her to own her own land and produce food for her family.
Published on 27/02/2014

In the words of family farmers – Guatemala
In Guatemala, many women, like weaver Ana Maria Gonzalez, depend on off-farm income to survive.
Published on 27/02/2014

In the words of family farmers: Indonesia
For seaweed farmer Hassan Heremba Basri teaching his children everything he knows about farming will ensure their successful future.
Published on 27/02/2014

In the words of family farmers – Ethiopia
76% of the world's poorest people live in rural areas of developing countries. Many, like Boru Gudo, depend on agriculture - and irregular rainfall - to survive. Boru explains how regular access to water has change his life.
Published on 27/02/2014

Custodians of diversity: Ethiopia's small farmers participate in conservation
Instigated by Melaku Worede, its former head, Ethiopia's national seed bank has embraced participatory planting since the 1980s. The approach involves opening the bank's doors to farmers and rural communities, drawing on their knowledge and establishing new partnerships as a means of conservation and preserving diversity. These days Melaku's pioneering work is widely promoted by the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation and other agencies, and a film about it - Seeds of Justice - is due for release later this year.
Published on 24/02/2014
West African farmers achieve massive cuts in pesticide use
William Settle is a Project Manager in FAO's Plant Production and Protection Division. In the following interview he discusses the West African Regional Integrated Production and Pest Management Programme, including the Farmer Field School project in Mali and some of the conclusions which came as a result of this programme.
Published on 20/02/2014
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