Agroforestry provides practical solutions to global problems

There are 800 million people still suffering from hunger globally. In addition to the urgency of finding solutions for the hungry living today, the world has to increase food production by an estimated 60% to meet the needs of the 9.3 billion people that are expected to exist by 2050. These figures call for an increase in total output, but also for changes in our food systems management.

Adopting a long term vision for tackling food insecurity issues necessarily means adopting more sustainable farming practices. This is where agroforestry comes in. Using the ecological functions of trees, animals and crops has the potential of increasing food production while simultaneously reducing agriculture’s footprint on the environment.  Perhaps even more important is to make these solutions work for the poor, whose lives are the most affected by environmental degradation.

Agroforestry contributes to addressing the problems the world is facing today. From an environmental standpoint, it helps to reduce agriculture’s contribution and vulnerability to climate change, while also improving water’s quality and availability, among other services. In terms of economic well-being, agroforestry can increase and diversify farmers’ incomes and allow them to have access to more nutritious food. As to the social benefits, agroforestry can empower women, validate indigenous knowledge and improve rural livelihoods.

To learn more, see the environmental, economic and social benefits of agroforestry.

Viet Nam ©FAO/AFP/Hoang Dinh Nam Haiti ©FAO/Luca Tommasini Cambodia ©K. Pratt

last updated:  Thursday, October 22, 2015