Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC), Ministry of National Food Security and Research, Government of Pakistan in collaboration with Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations is celebrating 34th ‘World Food Day’ here on Tuesday (today)
This year, theme of the World Food Day is “Agricultural Co-operatives: key to feeding the world” in recognition to the role co-operatives play in improving food security and contributing to the eradication of hunger as stated by the spokesperson of PARC. Co-operatives are present in all countries and all sectors, including agriculture, food, finance, health care, marketing, insurance and credit. It is estimated that one billion individuals are members of co-operatives world-wide, generating more than 100 million jobs around the world.
In both developed and developing countries, there are examples of innovative producer organisations and co-operatives that have proven successful in helping small producers overcome different constraints. However, they too often remain limited in scale and scope. The main challenge is to build on these success stories to achieve sustainable rural and agricultural development. For this, relevant stakeholders need to come together, with clear roles and responsibilities, to define the enabling environment where producer organisations can develop.
The importance of agriculture sector in the economy of Pakistan can be recognised from the fact that 62 percent of rural population is engaged in agriculture directly or indirectly, share of agriculture in exports is 60 percent, provides employment to about 44 percent and contributes about 21 percent share in national GDP, besides providing food to 177 million population and feeding over 160 million livestock and providing raw material for all agro-based industries.
The challenge we face, could only be addressed through translating the knowledge generated by the researchers into innovations and demand driven production technologies having potential to empower farming communities to increase their productivity.-PR