In the early stage of globalization was the humanization of the globe. This phase was characterized by two elements; Consumption and Production. This phase was a hunting to gather lifestyle, where ‘Consumption’ chased and moved to ‘Production’. Then there was a transition facilitated by Agriculture, which contributed immensely to the localization of the economy. This was characterized by a more sedentary lifestyle; humans stayed put and brought the production of food to themselves by using Agriculture to produce in the same place whenever they needed it. It involved the domestication of different species of animals and plants, which were bred and planted in close proximity. Agriculture ever since has remained pivotal to the local economy. In recent times, the role of Agriculture in feeding the human population remains essential. The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization reported in 2001 that 800 million people were suffering from chronic undernourishment. Of these, 98.2% live in developing countries and areas that are likely to be hit by hard climate change. Among the global catastrophic risks we face as a civilization, man-made risks threaten an ecological collapse and a global food crisis. Scholars describe the current historical moment as the start of a new geological era, called the Anthropocene, where humans as the predominant agents of change at the planetary level, change the nature of nature itself. The truth is, we are exceeding safe limits and operating at a high risk zone. Until we rapidly adopt a new sustainable paradigm, we will leave the safe operating ecological space where humanity has thrived. The challenge of developing a global food security solution need to be carefully directed. We must understand why and how the world is falling short in some regions and wasting in some regions, the life essential, food, and accordingly adopt first and foremost sustainable practices to mitigate against this challenge. Currently, we grow food that is used to feed livestock and cattle than we consume. Each stage in the food chain results in a massive loss of energy. If we grew food on the same area of land to be consumed by humans, instead of animals, we could feed another 4 billion people. This could be an enormous dietary lever, and a very simple way of improving food security (But, there are important cultural and political reasons why reducing meat intake may not be favorable across the world). For a concern, globally, 30-50% of food is wasted, though this varies hugely by region. In India, approximately 3 calories per person per day is wasted, while the US waste around 290 calories per person per day. If China, USA and India cut their food waste, over 400 million people could be fed. Inefficiency with the use of fertilizers and water, and existing land yielding below their potential are among the challenges we are facing now. The great question remains, how do we develop a sustainable solution to food security in a future climate when we will have 2 billion more mouths to feed? Many countries in the world are still prone to recurrent food crises. Late response will increase the risk considerably and a few years of inaction can make an alarming difference. This should spur the global community to action and also to carefully acknowledge the role of smallholder farming, the world’s food producers, in achieving food objectives. A vision of a world free from hunger and malnutrition, where food and agriculture contribute to improving the living standards of all, especially the poorest, in an economically, socially and an environmentally sustainable manner, cannot be achieved without smallholder farmers. The principal barrier to food security is food access and Global Food Security could be in jeopardy due to the mounting pressures on naturally extant resources and to climate change, both of which considerably threatens food sustainability. Smallholders are key actors in the quest for a more sustainable agricultural development model. The contribution of family farmers and smallholders at the grass root level will be crucial to food security and poverty reduction. According to the International Fund for Agriculture and Development and the United Nation’s Programme, about 2.5 billion people are employed, partially, or entirely, in 500 million farms worldwide. The grim reality is that, despite their important contribution, smallholders suffer neglect and as a result continue to account for the largest proportion of the poor in developing countries. Conventional industrial agriculture has been shown to be a major cause of environmental degradation. Smallholders cannot be overlooked in the new models of agriculture we wish to create. They remain the backbone of sustainable farming since they have a manageable ecological footprint. Implementing new approaches at the small-scale level provides a higher chance of success and it is imperative we meld seamlessly, the smallholder into the sustainable paradigm we want to develop. Smallholders have limited access to inputs and output markets, face stiff competition from large-scale farmers and fragmented value chains have made it difficult for them to participate in trade. For this reason, smallholders in most agrarian societies normally engage in subsistence farming and not commercial farming. With the constraints they face in productivity, technology and infrastructure and in the business environment, climate change threatens to compound and exacerbate their marginalization. Smallholder farming needs an intervention; a structural adjustment programme steered by a representing Advocating Body. A programme that can shake up small-scale agriculture and become the smallholder’s competitive advantage. The work of the programme is to fuse the work of cooperatives, provide a critical juncture that attracts and channels any form of resource needed, to stimulate agricultural practices aimed at adapting to climate change and mitigating the impact of agriculture on climate change, create room to incentivize and aggregate an enthusiastic participation from the Youth and women whilst maintaining and increasing productivity. This is a cause for both hope and concern. Let us create A WORKING FOOD ECONOMY through FOOD FARMING.
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