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Re: Forests and trees provide benefits for food security and nutrition– what is your say?

Mr. Emmanuel Suka Association of Friends of Limbe Botanic Garden, Cameroon

For the first question, I summarise the following challenges;
- Land tenure conflicts and gender issues in Africa is a big challenge to forest, trees on farms and agroforestry systems to food security, since most women cultivate the land but do not have ownership rights, moreso, in Africa, most forest and forest land is an exclusively state property and belonging, therefore, most of the local populations do not have adequate farmland.
- Bad governance including bribery and corruption in the management of forest and agricultural sector.
- About 89% of Africa still practice local and traditional farming systems which are less productive and cost ineffective, therefore, modern agroforestry farming systems and farming technologies that is still in low scale needs intensive expansion and improvement.
- Experts in modern farming systems of Agroforestry is insufficient, thus, requiring massive training.
- Problems of invasive species and pests on forest, trees on farms and agroforestry is adversely affecting food security.
For question two, I suggest that the following methods can increase the contributions of forests and trees to food security and nutrition goals;
+ Agroforestry system and approach
+ Participatory forest management approach through community forests
+ Recognition of indigenous peoples rights according to the TRIPS Agreement, ABS (Access to Benefit Sharing)
For question three, my opinion on what is needed for food security policies and strategies to recognize the contribution and value that forests and trees bring is as follows;
* Implement and re-enforce the law
* Up-scale training and transfer technology
* Develop and implement pilot projects for replication
* Make constant monitoring and evaluation and collect data
* Identify, promote and reward deserving and key players in the sector
* Include value addition as a strategy