International Year of Pulses 2016 is coming to an end

Since the official launch of the IYP at FAO headquarters on 10 November 2015, the nutritious seeds have become very popular. Indeed, the IYP is arousing a great deal of worldwide interest across a wide range of sectors – from agriculture and trade to health and nutrition.

So far, we have learned how pulses are small but powerful allies thanks to their nutritional and health benefits as well as their positive impact on the environment. With the overall aim to mainstream its key messages, the IYP is supported by a tight schedule of promotional activities.

With more than half a million sessions since its launch, the official IYP website is the virtual landmark of the International Year. News and updates are posted on a daily basis. And a wealth of information material, including factsheets, infographics, posters, videos and educational booklets has been produced and translated into some 20 languages.

Public participation in IYP activities is exceeding expectations. Users have submitted almost 150 events to the official IYP calendar, and pulses-based recipes from more than 30 countries are featured in the recipes section so far. The IYP Blog is a lively platform where people from different fields of expertise - farmers, nutritionists, health professionals, policymakers and home cooks can share their stories on pulses.

Furthermore, a series of events organized by FAO are bringing together stakeholders in the pulses sector. Five IYP regional dialogues took place, stimulating policy dialogue on pulses from a local perspective. Participants highlighted the crucial role of research and development and targeted policies to mainstream pulses.

The results of the regional dialogues will be discussed at the Global Dialogue (GD) on the IYP on 22-23 November at FAO headquarters. The two–day event will bring together a wide spectrum of stakeholders in the sector as well as representatives of each region. The GD will provide a forum to discuss the issues and challenges related to production, consumption and trade of pulses. It will also generate recommendations (in line with SDGs) for concrete action and follow-up beyond 2016.

Finally, the official closing ceremony of the IYP will be held in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, in early 2017. This will be a unique opportunity to recap the achievements of the year and turn the IYP legacy into a tangible set of activities.