FAO and Genetic Resources

Biodiversity and its sustainable use and management are fundamental not only for providing food, but for maintaining and enhancing well-managed agro-ecosystems which in turn are necessary for healthy food production. The role of biodiversity and the genetic resources it carries are essential for ensuring food security, sustainable livelihoods, ecosystem resilience, coping strategies for climate change, adequate nutritional requirements, insurance for the future (for example, for crop and animal breeding) and the management of biological processes needed for sustainable agricultural production.

There are still over a billion hungry people in the world today, and the resources with which to feed these people are becoming scarcer. Agricultural production systems need to focus more on the effective management of biodiversity and ecosystem services in order to conserve biodiversity and safeguard the environment, while feeding the global population. This is especially true in light of global challenges such as ensuring food security, climate change, shifts in population distribution and consumer preferences for food as well as potentially rising energy prices. Well-managed ecosystems are essential for ensuring a healthy resource base on which to intensify sustainably, to ensure that enough food is produced from now until 2050 – and beyond. [more...]

Biodiversity - for a world without hunger

Biodiversity for food and agriculture includes the components of biological diversity that are essential for feeding human populations and improving the quality of life. It includes the variety and variability of ecosystems, animals, plants and micro-organisms, at the genetic, species and ecosystem levels, which are necessary to sustain human life as well as the key functions of ecosystems.

Seed and Plant Genetic Resources

Over the years FAO has been continuously involved in seeds and plant genetic resources management, specifically though concrete actions such as building international awareness, policy assistance and support to negotiations, supporting capacity-building and strengthening information management and exchange.

Global Partnership Initiative for Plant Breeding Capacity Building

The Global Partnership Initiative for Plant Breeding Capacity Building (GIPB) is a multi-party initiative of knowledge institutions around the world that has a track record in supporting agricultural research and development, working in partnership with country programmes committed to developing stronger and effective plant breeding capacity. The GIPB is a platform facilitated by FAO, launched in 2006.