Global agricultural leaders gathered at the Global Dialogue on Family Farming in Rome, Italy, on Monday to discuss policy assistance for family farmers in creating an environment where they can assist in eliminating hunger.
There are 50 WFO delegates participating in the event, held at the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations Headquarters through Tuesday.
WFO members will have an opportunity to voice their pro-family farming perspective during the multi-stakeholder policy dialogue. The event is organized within the framework of the International Year of Family Farming, WFO said.
"Family farmers play important roles in many agricultural fields, from ensuring healthy nutrition to fostering innovation, from tackling climate change to achieving food security," said Dr. Evelyn Nguleka, World Farmers' Organization acting president.
"Despite our critical role, we still face many challenges, [such as] difficulties in accessing resources and raw materials, the aging of the population, and the lack of generational renewal in the agricultural sector, lack of training and financial assistance. And yet we are, in most of the cases, excluded from relevant decision-making fora, which directly affect our families and livelihoods.
"Family farmers have a great potential in eradicating hunger, but to do so enabling a policy environment is necessary," she said.
The Global Dialogue is organized by FAO through the International Steering Committee of IYFF, of which WFO has a seat. The meeting has brought together high-level government representatives, family farmers, civil society organizations, private sector, academia, and development agencies to take stock of the momentum created during IYFF, and to set the tone for the pro-family farming agenda for action post-2014.
"A sustainable future for all is only possible if Family Farmers' roles are noted and respected," Nguleka said during the opening session focused on raising the voice of Family Farmers. "We must shift from discussions to action, and innovation, in order to make family farming attractive to youth."