Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Policy briefs

The COVID-19 pandemic is impacting not only food trade, food supply chains and markets but also people’s lives, livelihoods and nutrition.

This collection of policy briefs presents a qualitative and quantitative assessment of the pandemic’s impacts on these areas.

Briefs are released on a day-to-day basis. Please check back frequently for the latest available briefs.

For media queries on any of the below topics, please contact [email protected]

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The role of social protection in the recovery from COVID-19 impacts in fisheries and aquaculture

Food systems were severely hit by COVID-19 and the related restrictions to the movement of people and goods. In fisheries and aquaculture, the socio-economic effects of COVID-19 are manifold including changes in consumer demand, limited storage facilities, drop in fresh fish prices and stopping fishing operations. Social protection has been a key response that governments took to alleviate the socio-economic impacts of COVID-19 restrictions for fishery-dependent communities. Countries with strong social protection systems in place were the most flexible to respond rapidly by adapting social protection programmes to the impact of COVID-19. Countries with weak social protection systems were less able to tailor programmes to attend the sector which is characterized by high informality. Several people who lost their employment were also left without any access to income support.

Contact personDaniela Kalikoski, Fishery Industry Officer

COVID-19 and animals: Information on risk mitigation measures for livestock and agricultural professionals

In response to the growing concern caused by the new SARS-CoV-2 variant strain, FAO has prepared this document to raise awareness amongst livestock professionals about highly susceptible captive farmed wild or domestic species and provide practical guidelines on how to prevent infecting animals or getting infected.

Contact personMadhur DhingraSenior animal health officer and Head of the Emergency Prevention System for Animal Health (EMPRES-AH).

Protecting land and natural resources tenure rights in the era of COVID-19 by heeding the lessons from the past

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused severe disruptions around the world, undermining the ability of small food producers to access and control their land and the natural resources they need, and thereby rendering them more vulnerable to encroachment on their tenure rights. While the impact of the COVID-19 crisis is still unfolding, experiences gained from the impact of the food crises of the late 2000s on tenure rights have a lot to teach. This brief aims to provide guidance and insights to policy-makers, regulators, and affected stakeholders on how evaluate and plan for how to protect the tenure rights of small food producers, particularly women, indigenous peoples (IPs) and other vulnerable groups, to avoid exacerbating the negative effects of the existing health crisis. It argues, amongst other recommendations, for the implementation of legislative and regulatory frameworks that protect legitimate tenure rights and livelihoods; for land governance frameworks, such as multi-stakeholder platforms, that help stakeholders and decision-makers solve land related issues; and for digitalizing data to inform legislative and policy decision-making. 

Contact person: Blaise KuemlanganChief, Development Law Service (LEGN)

Impacts of COVID-19 on wood value chains and forest sector response

This policy brief summarizes the findings from a global survey on the impacts of the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak on wood value chains and recovery measures from the forest sector. The survey received responses from 237 stakeholders registered in the Sustainable Wood for a Sustainable World (SW4SW) network, representing all segments of wood value chains. The survey was administered for two weeks (3–15 June 2020) and the results presented here cover impacts during the reference period of February to June 2020. Based on the survey results, initial policy recommendations are formulated for current challenges and future perspectives involving wood value chains in the post-COVID-19 environment.

Contact personMs Thaís Linhares Juvenal, Senior Forestry Officer, Forestry Division

COVID-19 and the role of local food production in building more resilient local food systems

COVID-19 pandemic has put local food systems at risk of disruptions along the entire agri-food value chain. Cities and local governments are currently playing a major role in limiting the spread of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 and in mitigating disruptions to their local food systems.

To better understand the situation, FAO has been closely monitoring local food system status and prevailing practices during COVID-19, collecting information and insights from different cities on key challenges and specific responses through various channels. 

The insights, data and cases presented in this paper highlight the role of local food production and value chains in enhancing local food systems’ resilience against COVID-19.

Contact person: Guido Santini, FAO City Region Food System Programme Coordinator

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