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State of the World's Forests 2016 (SOFO):Forests and agriculture: land use challenges and opportunities

The State of the World’s Forests (SOFO) 2016 shows that it is possible to increase agricultural productivity and food security while halting or even reversing deforestation, highlighting the successful efforts of Costa Rica, Chile, the Gambia, Georgia, Ghana, Tunisia and Viet Nam. 

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For more information, visit the SOFO web site.

Recent releases

Water along the Food Chain: Ukraine

In 2013, a joint FAO/EBRD project entitled “Water along the food chain” was initiated in four pilot countries – Ukraine, Turkey, Jordan and Kyrgyz Republic. The specific objectives of this project are four-fold: (i) conduct selected analyses of water efficiency along the food chain to inform EBRD’s agribusiness investment decisions; (ii) identify potential agribusiness clients for the bank and areas for further policy dialogue to improve water efficiency; (iii) improve agricultural water-use policy-making processes at the country level in the four abovementioned pilot countries through the involvement of private sector players; and (iv) coordinate the bank’s future interventions regarding water efficiency along the food value chain with those of other international financial institutions (IFIs) operating in the transition region. The main objective of this report is to indicate ways for Ukraine to move towards more water efficient and productive solutions.

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Codex Alimentarius Commission Procedural Manual. Twenty-fifth edition

The Procedural Manual of the Codex Alimentarius Commission is intended to help Members Governments participate effectively in the work of the joint FAO/WHO Food Standards Programme. The manual is particularly useful for national delegation attending Codex meeting and for internationals organizations attending as observers. It sets out the basic Rules of Procedures, procedures for the elaboration of Codex standards and related texts, basic definitions and guidelines for the operation of Codex committees and also gives the membership of the Codex Alimentarius Commission.

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Proceedings of the FAO International Symposium on the Role of Agricultural Biotechnologies in Sustainable Food Systems and Nutrition

The symposium encompassed the crop, livestock, forestry and fishery sectors and was organized around three main themes: i) climate change; ii) sustainable food systems and nutrition; and iii) people, policies, institutions and communities. The proceedings provide the main highlights of the symposium which covered a broad range of biotechnologies, from low-tech approaches such as those involving use of microbial fermentation processes, biofertilizers, biopesticides and artificial insemination, to high-tech approaches such as those involving advanced DNA-based methodologies and genetically modified organisms.

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Welfare Impacts of Climate Shocks: Evidence from Tanzania

The goal of this study is to provide a comprehensive analysis of the impact of weather risk on rural households’ welfare in Tanzania using nationally representative household panel data together with a set of novel weather variation indicators based on interpolated gridded and re-analysis weather data that capture the peculiar features of short term and long term variations in rainfall and temperature. 

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How Sustainability is Addressed in Official Bioeconomy Strategies at International, National and Regional Levels: An Overview

This report provides an overview of about twenty bioeconomy strategies, at international , national and sub-national levels. It analyses how these strategies have addressed sustainability issues. The report also provides a brief discussion on approaches used to develop bioeconomy strategies. Finally, it also discusses the action plans of 10 action plans related to some of these strategies,and some comncluding remarks.

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Assessing water availability and economic, social and nutritional contributions from inland capture fisheries and aquaculture: An indicator-based framework

This study provides an initial indicator-based framework for understanding the economic, social and nutritional contributions of inland capture fisheries and aquaculture and their links to available water resources. Fourteen indicators covering environmental, economic, social and nutritional dimensions of inland fisheries and aquaculture are identified and tested in eighteen African and Asian countries with significant inland fish production. 

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Assessment of International Labour Standards that apply to rural employment: An overview for the work of FAO relating to labour protection in agriculture, forestry and fisheries

The study identifies and assesses the international labour standards that apply to rural employment. It analyzes international labour, human rights and other instruments that apply to the agriculture, forestry and fisheries sectors. It further highlights the challenges of labour protection in these sectors and suggests ways of overcoming such constraints.

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Seafood traceability systems|: Gap analysis of inconsistencies in standards and norms

This report identifies and analyses gaps and inconsistencies in the current fish traceability standards and regulations. As a first step in reaching this goal, the key terms in understanding the concept of traceability were explained and this concept was described in connection with related notion. The second step consisted in performing a comprehensive literature review on which the gap analysis of the traceability standards and regulations was built on. The last step in this study was performing a content analysis of selected international standards and guidelines, regulatory standards, and industry and NGO non-regulatory standards.

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Selection and application of methods for the detection and enumeration of human-pathogenic halophilic Vibrio spp. in seafood: Guidance

The development of methods for the isolation and identific of pathogenic Vibrio spp. in seafoods is evlolving quickly. This often means that methods become more sensitive and efficient but the cost may also increase. However the pace of development also means that there is not always adequate time to to comprehensively validate a method for a particular purpose. This publication aims to provide guidance on the selection on the most appropriate method to meet a particular purpose and how in a constantly changing environment some local validation work can be undertaken to ensure a method meets the current nneeds of a regulator, industry or risk assessor.

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FAO Southern Africa El Niño Response Plan (2016-17)

The El Niño phenomenon poses a global threat to the agricultural livelihoods of millions of people. In Southern Africa, over 39 million people are now food insecure due to the impacts of El Niño, which have been felt across all sectors — food and nutrition security, agriculture (both crops and livestock), water and sanitation, energy, health and education. The poor 2015/16 agricultural season, compounded by last year’s poor harvest that left only two countries with surplus food to export, has greatly affected the food and nutrition security of millions of people. The lean season is expected to continue through April 2017, which will have a cumulative eroding effect on the production capacities of farmers in the 2016/17 agricultural season. 

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