Food Coalition

Enhancing the sustainability of production systems for green and resilient recovery

The COVID-19 pandemic has amplified the vulnerability of food and agriculture production systems in the Near East and North Africa (NENA). The system already faces serious challenges and the region is among the most land- and water-scarce in the world. Climate change is expected to exacerbate food insecurity by widening the same vulnerabilities to agricultural production that COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted. This is especially critical for countries in the region that face severe resource limitations and are highly dependent on imports of food and agricultural inputs.

The disruption to food systems caused by the COVID-19 crisis creates opportunities to invest in longer-term, green and resilient transformation. Such a transformation is necessary to avoid further undermining biodiversity, soil loss, and land degradation which can exacerbate the effects of climate change[1] and destroy the natural buffer against zoonotic diseases. Among the farming systems most vulnerable to climate risk are rain-fed agro-silvopastoral production systems, high-value crop production; and irrigated systems. Intensive crop production, overgrazing, the destruction of habitats and poor land and water management practices pose medium- to long-term risks in the face of climate change and are a barrier to long-term resilience.

The proposed programme addresses the objective of improving the institutional and policy environment for sustainable food systems transformation. This includes strengthening analysis of climate and food system-related risks, capacity building and improved multisectoral dialogue for integrating climate change, biodiversity and land degradation in green recovery, and improved monitoring and data collection systems for assessing climate shocks to agriculture.

[1] United Nations, 2020. Policy brief: The impact of COVID-19 on food security and nutrition.

Priority Areas of work: Food Systems Transformation
SDG: 1. No Poverty, 2. Zero Hunger, 5. Gender Equality, 13. Climate Action, 15. Life on Land
Level: Regional
Region: Near East and North Africa
Country: Egypt, Jordan, Morocco, Sudan
Budget: USD 1 million

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