Newsletter A+FS and e+i|EPS / September 2020

​The A+FS Network publishes its Newsletter together with the Employment and Income Network and the Competence Center for the Engagement with the Private Sector (EPS). Please select your area of interest: Agriculture and Food Security | Vocational Skills Development / Private Sector Development / Financial Sector Development / EPS

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SDC Food Systems Dialogues to contribute to UN Summit 2021

The approaching United Nations Food Systems Summit makes 2021 a very big year for agriculture and food security. 
In order to nurture the summit, to contribute to a common understanding of priorities and to increase participation of different stakeholders impacting food systems, the A&FS Network is organizing a series of Food Systems Dialogues.

People linked to several SDC networks will be taking part and bringing in their experiences and points of view, while discussing key issues regarding food systems. These Food Systems Dialogues will take place between November 2020 and May 2021 as a series of online events.

Follow this link to find out more about the topics that will be discussed, who will be participating and the idea behind the Food Systems Dialogues!

Please share your ideas, questions and inputs with us!

Ueli Mauderli, Lou Curchod and Luc R​uffieux of the A&FS Focal Point Team​

Members' Articles | Your comments join the network!

Pakistan: State of Food Security and Nutrition​ 

[by Daniel Valenghi]
Regular monitoring of Pakistan's food security and nutrition situation can support effective policy. SDC supported the first ever “Pakistan State of Food Security and Nutrition” report, which is the combined effort of fo​​​ur UN agencies and the Government of Pakistan coming together to present the overall picture, of where Pakistan stands in the efforts to eliminate hunger and malnutrition. They conclude that more needs to be done however to improve the access dimension, so far still hampered by different levels of inequalities… [read more]

Agricultural Services Improve Livelihoods in Afghanistan​

Sheep vaccination and distribution in one of the target area, © FAO[by Haroon Ahmad Haleemzai]
Farming households in the Central Highlands of Afghanistan suffer from high levels of poverty and food insecurity. The project focuses on improving household food security and livelihoods of the poorest farming families in the province of Bamyan ...  [read more]

A review of Sub-Saharan Africa Postharvest Management 

© FAO - Ethiopia

[by Addis Teshome Kebede
A final evaluation of the Postharvest Management (PHM) in Sub-Saharan Africa project highlights the introduction and promotion of simple and practical PHM practices and technologies as the most effective option to reduce postharvest losses. The findings of the evaluation provide insights into lessons learnt and takeaways from the project...​ [read more] ​

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Agroecology for climate-resilient livelihoods and food systems

​“How can agroecology foster climate change adaptation, mitigation and resilience through practices and policies?” stands in the center of the study ‘The potential of agroecology to build climate-resilient livelihoods and food systems’, co-published by the FAO and Biovision Foundation with technical support from FiBL highlights the links between agroecology and climate change, by providing evidence on the technical and policy potential of agroecology to build resilient food systems... [read more​​

Launch of the “Money Flows Report”​

“What is holding back investment in agroecological research for Africa?" asks the report, co-developed by Biovision, IPES-Food and the Institute of Development Studies (IDS). Itzooms in on the financial flows in food system research to sub-Saharan Africa, with a view to understanding more about how the industrial model is perpetuated and where the opportunities lie for sparking agroecological transition... [read more]​ ​​

Discover the new Hand-in-Hand geospatial platform, that FAO launched, with a large and rich set of data on food, agriculture, socioeconomics, and natural resources to help strengthen evidence-based decision-making regarding over ten domains linked to food and agriculture: From food security, crops, soil, land, water, climate, fisheries, livestock to forestry. The platform is a crucial tool for all efforts to build back better and create more resilient food systems post COVID-19... [read more​]​

Due to COVID-19, malnutrition is on the rise and SDC funded projects like SNV’s Sustainable Nutrition for All (SN4A) are even more important than before the pandemic. In this technical paper the spotlight is put on the food environment as it draws on ex​periences from the Sustainable Nutrition for All project in Uganda and Zambia. In partnership with the Wageningen Centre for Development and Innovation (WCDI), the project aims to improve nutrition outcomes through the adoption of agro-biodiversity and improved dietary diversity and hygiene practices at intra-household level... [read more​]

Events | Your comments join the network!

CFS High-Level Special Event on Food Security and Nutrition

The Committee on World Food Security (CFS) will organize a High-Level Virtual Special Event on Food Security and Nutrition, 13 - 15 October 2020. To enrich and complement the plenary discussions CFS will organize 12 virtual side events. The side events will be hosted/co-hosted and organized by CFS stakeholders. [read more]

The Horn of Africa and Sahel Virtual Knowledge Share Fair

The Horn of Africa and Sahel Virtual Knowledge Share Fair: Promoting innovation to build resilience against climate shocks event will be hosted online from the 20th to 22nd of October 2020. The planned 2020 share fair will build on previous efforts to promote knowledge management for informed decision-making and investment. [read more] ​

Who is who | Your comments join the network!

Marylaure Crettaz Corredor

Co-head of the Global Programme Food Security at SDC

After spending three years in India as the Head of the Swiss Cooperation Office, you're now back in Switzerland as the Co-head of the Global Programme Food Security. What stands out most for you looking back at those years working in India?

Spending three years in India has been a fantastic personal and professional experience! I have had the opportunity to travel extensively across this huge and fascinating country accompanying the project teams but also privately with my family.

Fortunately, I was able to carry out field visits in very different contexts and meet with farmers applying innovative climate-smart techniques in Bihar, members of a solar-cooperative in Gujarat or villagers of flood-prone areas in the mountainous Sikkim. I have of course fond memories of Indian food, beautiful landscapes, lively and colourful cities, music and Bollywood films while at the same time we have faced the challenges of the remaining poverty, important levels of air pollution and in the last months of my tenure a prolonged lockdown of 3 months due to the Covid outbreak.

Since August you are the Co-Head of GPFS. Where do you identify the biggest upcoming challenges working in agriculture and food security on a global scale?

The biggest challenge will be to find ways and solutions to transform our current food systems that are definitely unsustainable. When looking at the interconnectedness of food with all other topics: water, climate, environment, poverty, migration or health, it shows the huge challenges ahead of us. Fortunately, there is a growing awareness of different stakeholders to try to change this situation. The UN Food Systems summit planned for 2021 will be a great opportunity to put these issues at the highest political level but hopefully also within the society. I am somehow dreaming of a youth mobilisation not only for the climate but also for sustainable food! 

Another challenge that I see will be on the communication side. The GPFS will have a strong focus on nutrition and agroecology in the coming 4 years. A nutritious and healthy food is a concept quite easy to understand for everyone. However, explaining in simple terms what do we understand by agroecology will be more difficult. Agroecology is a broader concept than only considering an environmental-friendly production (no chemical inputs for instance). It involves a set of practices but also principles of participation and knowledge exchange. We will have to find convincing ways to show that agroecology is one of the solutions to make food systems more sustainable.​

How does the experience you gathered being abroad help you with the tasks that lay ahead of you?​

It is definitely useful to have been working in different geographic and cultural contexts, to have met SDC's partners also in the field, for instance the multilateral institutions we are supporting (IFAD and others), to have used different modalities of the international cooperation and finally to have developed a diverse and extended network. All of these elements will be of great help in my new position at GPFS. I really hope we will be able to work in close collaboration and synergies with other units within SDC as well with other development partners to reach a greater impact in our interventions.

Marylaure Crettaz Corredor has more than 20 years of international cooperation experience. After 4 years at the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) with missions in Rwanda, Kosovo and Colombia, she joined in 2003 the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC). She has since then consolidated her experience in natural resources management, rural development, agriculture and food security, climate change and economic development. From 2017 to 2020, she was Counsellor and Head of SDC, Swiss Embassy New Delhi. Since August 2020, she is co-heading the Global Programme Food Security at SDC’s headquarters.
Marylaure has supported knowledge sharing and policy processes in different fields at national and regional levels (Andes, West Africa, Central America and the Caribbean, South Asia), as well as in global platforms, within SDC Global Programme Food Security and Climate Change & Environment. She has a Masters in Geology and Earth Sciences, University of Lausanne and Bern, Switzerland.

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