CGIAR Alliance Calls for Resurgence of Investment in Agricultural Research
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3 June 2008: Speaking at the FAO High-Level Conference on World Food Security, which convened in Rome, Italy, from 3-5 June 2008, Emile Frison, Chair of the Alliance of Centres supported by the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) and Director General of Bioversity International, said that, among other factors, lack of investment in […]

Emile_frison
3 June 2008: Speaking at the FAO High-Level Conference on
World Food Security, which convened in Rome, Italy, from 3-5 June 2008, Emile
Frison, Chair of the Alliance of Centres supported by the Consultative Group on
International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) and Director General of Bioversity
International, said that, among other factors, lack of investment in
agricultural research has contributed to the global food price crises. He
highlighted the importance of such investment, citing a World Bank report on
investment into agricultural development that found “an average internal rate
of return of 43 percent.”

He outlined CGIAR’s action plan, highlighting: the need to provide
food aid without creating market distortions; combining high yielding varieties
with low-tech, low-input agriculture; and the need for stress tolerant
varieties and production systems that deliver high and stable yields, against
the background of complex global markets, climate extremes and decreasing
biodiversity. In closing, he called for a “significant resurgence of investment
in agricultural research and development” at all levels, without which the
fundamental problems of the food crisis “will haunt us in the future.” [Statement]
[Conference website]
[IISD RS coverage]

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