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Food security in mountains


A current analysis of hunger in mountainous areas

About 39 percent of the mountain population in developing countries, or 329 million people, is estimated to be vulnerable to food insecurity: that means one of every three mountain dwellers says a recent FAO/Mountain Partnership Secretariat study. When only rural areas are considered, this figure increases to one out of every two. During the period 2000-2012 despite food insecurity had decreased at global level, it has increased in mountain areas.

These alarming statistics give voice to the plight of mountain peoples. They send a clear message to policy-makers on the importance of including mountains in their development agendas that should focus on alleviating the harsh living conditions of mountain communities and reducing the outmigration from mountain areas.

The study revealed a 30 percent increase in the number of mountain people vulnerable to food insecurity from 2000 to 2012, while the mountain population increased by only 16 percent.

The FAO 2015 Mountain Vulnerability Model

The model estimates the availability of calories in rural mountain regions, considering the production rate of agricultural areas as an average of the yields of six main mountain crops (beans, cassava, maize, potatoes, rice and wheat). It also includes information on food quality by estimating the availability of proteins from beef meat, cow milk, sheep meat, sheep milk, goat meat, goat milk, pig meat, chicken meat and eggs. People having access to less than 1 370 kcal and 14 g of animal protein per day are considered to be at risk of food insecurity as those thresholds are taken as survival requirements in the event that other foods are not available. 

Household surveys: another tool to measure hunger

Household surveys allow for a more integrated assessment of vulnerability to food insecurity as they encompass a wide range of factors like water quality, sanitation facilities and road networks, in addition to crop and livestock availability. Thanks to the information on the vital statistics of the sample, it is possible to estimate the vulnerability to food insecurity by gender, age, education and much more. Household surveys allow also the precise localization of vulnerability hot spots, which, in turn, can facilitate the targeting of policy interventions.

Short Course: Crop Genetic Diversity in the Field and on the Farm, Principles and Applications in Research Practices

Short Course: Crop Genetic Diversity in the Field and on the Farm, Principles and Applications in Research Practices

event

The University of Rome Sapienza, in collaboration with the Platform for Agrobiodiversity Research (PAR) and Bioversity International, will hold a one-week credited short course on “Crop Genetic Diversity in the Field and on the Farm: Principles and Applications in Research Practice”, based on a text book by the...

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FAO

FAO's Work in Sustainable Mountain Development and Watershed Management—A 2017 Update

publication

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) provides an update on its activities related to sustainable mountain development and watershed management in this 2017 platform statement published in Volume 37, Issue 2 (May 2017) of Mountain Research and Development.

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High-level mountain conference announced

High-level mountain conference announced

news

A high-level conference on mountains, titled “Mountains under Pressure”, will be held on 11 December 2017 at the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in Rome, Italy, announced Mountain Partnership Secretariat Coordinator Thomas Hofer on 24 May. The theme of the conference will be “Climate,...

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Eradicating poverty in mountains

Eradicating poverty in mountains

news

The Russian Academy of Natural Sciences (RANS), a Mountain Partnership member in General Consultative Status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), contributed a written statement on behalf of the Mountain Partnership to the 2017 ECOSOC Integration Segment on 8-10 May 2017. As the theme of...

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Mountains, one year after the Paris Agreement

Mountains, one year after the Paris Agreement

news

One year ago, on 22 April (Earth Day) 2016, 175 of the 197 Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) gathered at United Nations Headquarters in New York to sign the Paris Agreement, an international treaty to address climate change. As of today, one year after...

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Call for papers on shifting cultivation

Call for papers on shifting cultivation

news

Work has begun on a new book, focused on “Farmer Innovations and Best Practices by Shifting Cultivators in Asia-Pacific”. The Editor of the forthcoming volume invites those working with or studying shifting cultivation in the Asia-Pacific region to submit papers and supporting photographs documenting and analysing farmer innovations and best...

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