Civil Society

FAO and URGENCI sign agreement on local and solidarity-based food distribution systems

30/10/2017 - 

A new Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between FAO and URGENCI, an international network that supports community agriculture, is poised to deepen the UN agency’s collaboration with global civil society. 

The agreement, to be signed on 30 October 2017 by FAO Deputy Director-General for Programmes Daniel Gustafson and Judith Hitchman, President of URGENCI, will formalize the partnership between the two organizations by joining their efforts to map and promote short food-supply chain initiatives in all world regions.

By documenting existing practices, methods and good experiences on local and solidarity-based food distribution systems between consumers and producers, the two organizations aim to promote the exchange of that knowledge and support the spread of similar networks of consumers and producers across the globe.  “Territorial food systems” can make agriculture and food production more productive and sustainable, as noted by FAO’s recent the State of Food and Agriculture report.

FAO and URGENCI will also jointly produce a capacity development framework as well as a series of manuals, practical handbooks and other educational material on local- and solidarity based partnerships between producers and consumers.

This collaboration will contribute to the achievement of several of FAO’s strategic objectives (in particular objectives 2 3 and 4 while will make significant contributions to the realization of two of the internationally-agreed Sustainable Development Goals: SDG 2 (Zero Hunger) and SDG 12 (Responsible Consumption and Production).

Set to benefit are small-scale food producers, consumers and other practitioners of local and solidarity based partnerships.

About the partners

FAO is the UN’s point agency on efforts to eradicate hunger and make agriculture and food systems more sustainable. Its activities comprise main areas of action: Putting information within reach and supporting the transition to sustainable agriculture; strengthening political will and sharing policy expertise; bolstering public-private collaboration to improve smallholder agriculture; bringing knowledge to the field; supporting countries in preventing and mitigating risks to food security.

URGENCI is an international, membership driven network of small-scale food producers and consumers with approximately 2 million members in over 30 countries. URGENCI promotes a locally-based economic model of agriculture and food distribution, facilitates solidarity partnerships between small-scale food producers and consumers to increase local food security. URGENCI aims to support and strengthen various, context-specific forms of short supply chains through the intensification of producers- consumers partnerships in local food webs.