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Accelerating research delivery and adoption of innovations for food security

“Food security is the issue of our time.” (United States Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, 2011). There are now one in seven people in the world (one billion people) who go hungry every day. The global food security situation continues to deteriorate due to population increases combined with low world food stocks, demand for biofuels, depleting resources, climate change and increasing energy costs.

What is the AIFSC?

The Australian International Food Security Centre (AIFSC) was announced by the Prime Minister of Australia, the Hon. Julia Gillard, in October 2011 at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Australia. The Prime Minister announced that the AIFSC would be established as a centre within the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR). The Australian Government made a financial commitment to the AIFSC of A$33 million over four years. The AIFSC will have an international focus, recognising the significance of food security to developing countries across Africa, Asia and the Pacific region. However, initial focus will be given to advancing food security in Sub-Saharan Africa.

About the AIFSC

The AIFSC is making a significant contribution to addressing food security by providing a bridge between agricultural innovations (technologies, policies and practices) and their adoption by smallholder farmers, including livestock keepers. If adoption can be enhanced, this should increase agricultural productivity and diversity and generate additional income. This will in turn contribute to economic development and promote food security. Our key focus is to understand the incentives and barriers to delivery and adoption, to accelerate the provision of practical solutions to benefit smallholders. We are giving attention to achieving better nutritional quality, safety and diversity of food; reduced losses post harvest, and better access to markets and other business opportunities. We are also focusing on education and capacity building of relevant institutions and individuals. Gender will be a central element of all our work, recognising that many smallholders farmers are women. We are engaging with a broad range of national and international partners from researchers through to delivery and extension workers, from the public and private sectors, community groups and civil society.

AIFSC Conference

The AIFSC and its strategy will be officially launched at a high-level international Forum in November 2012

More Information

To find out more read our latest June update

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