Plant Production and Protection

Advancing agroecology through collaboration with parliamentarian networks

FAO joins Members of Parliament (MPs) from nine countries to strengthen their capacities on agroecology during the Commission for Economic, Social and Environmental Affairs

Field visit with parliamentarians to Nasao Village Integrated Organic Vegetable Family Farm

©FAO/ Pierre Ferrand


In a long-running collaboration between the Assemblée Parlementaire de la Francophonie (APF), a network of  francophone parliaments , and FAO, Pierre Ferrand, FAO Agricultural Officer, and Boris Gandon, FAO Partnerships Specialist for Parliamentary Alliances, attended the Commission for Economic, Social and Environmental Affairs (CAESE) in Luang Prabang, Lao People’s Democratic Republic on 9-11 April 2024.

More than 20 parliamentarians from Belgium, Benin, Cambodia, Canada, Côte d'Ivoire, France, Lao People's Democratic Republic, Morocco, Viet Nam, attended the meeting, with participation from members of the Lao National Assembly, including the Vice President, H.E. Sommad Pholsena.

“We hope that this first initiative will pave the way for further engagement and collaboration with parliamentarian networks to advance agroecology through increased legislative support,” Ferrand said.

All parliamentarians attending the CAESE meeting. ©FAO/ Gabrielle Angers-Gosselin

Working with the AFD-EU funded ASSET Project and ALiSEA Network, FAO organized a field visit to two agroecological farms in Luang Prabang Province (Nasao Village Integrated Organic Vegetable Family Farm and Ban Suan AiAoun Organic Farm) run by young farmers. During the visits, MP delegations and farmers held extensive exchanges on the key challenges and enablers for young farmers – including what lawmakers can do to support inclusive and sustainable food systems transformation. This included discussions about production costs and rentability, technical trainings, markets for agroecological products (access, certifications, premium prices) and policy support.

The field visit was followed by a seminar that delved into the concepts of agroecology. It highlighted how agroecology can help both farmers and policymakers addressing challenges such as climate change, biodiversity loss, youth employment and food security and nutrition.

During the Commission for Economic, Social and Environmental Affairs meeting, chaired by H.E Mohammed Réda Lahmini from Morocco, a broad range of topics was discussed: agroecology, biodiversity loss, the promotion of women's entrepreneurship, the APF legislative corpus on climate policies, international negotiations within the World Trade Organization framework, the interparliamentary advocacy for the eradication of plastic waste and the importance of the circular economy.

FAO representatives were invited to share their expertise on the various topics covered. The experience of the Latin American and Caribbean Parliament (PARLATINO) in drafting a model law on agroecology, for which FAO has provided technical support, was of particular interest to parliamentarians from French-speaking countries where it may be applied.

Bringing members of parliament to the field and introducing them to agroecological champions could increase visibility and broaden the political support for the agroecological transition in the Lao People's Democratic Republic and beyond.

Nasao Village Integrated Organic Vegetable Family Farm. ©FAO/Gabrielle Angers-Gosselin

Field visit with parliamentarians to Ban Suan AiAoun Organic Farm. ©FAO/Gabrielle Angers-Gosselin