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Global Food Security    [3 followers]  Follow    
  Hybrid Journal Hybrid journal (It can contain Open Access articles)
     ISSN (Print) 2211-9124
     Published by Elsevier Homepage  [2556 journals]   [H-I: 1]
  • Does the conversion of grasslands to row crop production in semi-arid
           areas threaten global food supplies?
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 23 January 2014
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): David E. Clay , Sharon A. Clay , Kurtis D. Reitsma , Barry H. Dunn , Alexander J. Smart , Gregg G. Carlson , David Horvath , James J. Stone
      In the world's semi-arid regions, high crop demands have produced short term economic incentives to convert food production on native grasslands to dryland row crop food production, while genetic enhancements and equipment have reduced the risk of crop failure. The objectives of this paper were to discuss (1) the importance of considering the long-term sustainability of changing land use in semi-arid regions; (2) the impact of extreme climatic events on ecosystem functioning; and (3) factors contributing to higher crop yields in semi-arid regions. Semi-arid regions contain fragile areas where extreme climate events may be a tipping point that converts an apparent sustainable system to a non-sustainable ecosystem. However, semi-arid regions also contain zones where “better” management practices have reduced the agricultural impacts on the environment, increased soil carbon levels, and stimulated economic development. Research suggests that food production can be increased by enhancing the productivity of existing cropped land. However, this statement does not infer that crop production on all existing cropped lands in semi-arid regions is sustainable. Worldwide, targeted research should be conducted to clearly identify local barriers to conservation practice adoption and identify the long-term ramifications of extreme climatic events and land-use changes on semi-arid ecosystem functioning.


      PubDate: 2014-01-25T00:03:24Z
       
  • Soybean production potential in Africa
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 8 January 2014
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): Thomas R. Sinclair , Helene Marrou , Afshin Soltani , Vincent Vadez , Krishna C. Chandolu
      Soybean (Glycine max [L.] Merr.) could possibly become a major crop in Africa due to its many uses as a food, feed, and in industry. Also, its ability to undertake symbiotic nitrogen fixation is a great advantage over cereal crops. This study simulated yield potential across west and east Africa. A number of areas were excluded from soybean production because of inadequate early season rains to allow timely sowing of the crop. Among the remaining areas, average yields greater than 200gm−2 were commonly simulated. Two drought traits were examined as plant modifications to increase yields. These results identified those areas and plant traits in Africa where soybean has the potential to be an important, viable crop.


      PubDate: 2014-01-09T00:04:27Z
       
  • Taking planetary nutrient boundaries seriously: Can we feed the
           people?
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 3 December 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): Helena Kahiluoto , Miia Kuisma , Anna Kuokkanen , Mirja Mikkilä , Lassi Linnanen
      Recent research suggests that anthropogenic nutrient flows may have transgressed the regulatory capacity of the earth. Agrifood systems account for most of the flows, and the food supply is limited more by reducing the excessive flows than by phosphorus (P) reserves or population growth. The food supply is limited primarily by the P flow tolerated by freshwater ecosystems and next by the needed reduction in the conversion of nitrogen (N) to reactive form in fertilizer manufacture, legume cultivation and fossil fuel combustion. The required reduction in P and N flows would reduce the food supply to 250 and 710kcalcapita−1 d−1, respectively, in the current agrifood systems. Dietary changes, waste prevention and nutrient recycling are parts of the necessary transformation.


      PubDate: 2013-12-08T02:59:44Z
       
  • Enhancing the impact of natural resource management research: Lessons from
           a meta-impact assessment of the Irrigated Rice Research Consortium
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 27 November 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): Roderick M. Rejesus , Adrienne M. Martin , Phrek Gypmantasiri
      This article present results from a multi-dimensional impact assessment of a large multi-year Natural Resource Management (NRM) research project for rice – the Irrigated Rice Research Consortium (IRRC) – and uses insights from this assessment to further understand how NRM research can be improved to have more impact in a developing country context. Results of the meta-impact assessment indicate that NRM research generated by the IRRC has provided a wide-range of impacts in multiple dimensions—from micro-level impacts on farmer livelihoods to national-level agricultural policy influence. Based on the IRRC experience, international NRM research institutions can enhance impact in developing countries by: fostering partnerships, collaborations, and cross-country learning; involving social scientists for monitoring, evaluation, and impact assessment; and, having long-term support and involvement of donors.


      PubDate: 2013-11-30T00:02:31Z
       
  • Why crop yields in developing countries have not kept pace with advances
           in agronomy
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 20 November 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): Thomas George
      Crop research generates two distinct sets of products: improved germplasm and advances in agronomy — technologies and knowledge/techniques to efficiently exploit the germplasm yield potential (Yp). The success of the Green Revolution was largely due to high farmer adoption of improved germplasm along with subsidized inputs that greatly increased average yield (Ya) from a low base. Although farmers adopted irrigation, fertilizers, machinery and other inputs that changed their agronomy and led to robust total factor productivity (TFP) growth, the Ya remained well below Yp indicating poor agronomy practice. Policies focusing on total production to meet food demand have also contributed to expansion of harvested area at low Ya and low input efficiency (low productivity of land, labor, water, fertilizer or other). Yield growth has since slowed or Ya has stalled at low levels unlike in developed countries where Ya advanced markedly closer to Yp. This paper argues that poor agronomy practice in developing countries is because of farmers' rational perception, regardless of their information needs, of high risks and low returns which do not justify the additional investments in labor and inputs required to systematically practice agronomy. As such, farmers default to low-risk, low-yield practices, even though they would temporarily switch to high-yield practices in low-risk settings, such as in agricultural projects. With poor agronomy practice, there is also little market feedback in developing countries for agronomy research products. Therefore, the potential for agronomy to dramatically increase Ya and productivity remains untapped in developing countries. To increase farmer yields and incomes without enlarging the agricultural footprint at low Ya, this paper argues that the focus must shift from relying mainly on germplasm-driven increases in total production to increasing both Ya and productivity of inputs through effective agronomy practice. This requires creating low-risk, high-return market settings for the average developing country farmer.


      PubDate: 2013-11-22T00:04:54Z
       
  • Fisheries in transition: Food and nutrition security implications for the
           global South
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 7 November 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): Ben Belton , Shakuntala Haraksingh Thilsted
      Fisheries and fish supply are undergoing a fundamental structural transition, as indicated by a ten country analysis. Aquaculture now provides around half the fish for direct human consumption and is set to grow further, but capture fisheries continue to make essential contributions to food and nutrition security throughout the global South. Capture fisheries provide diverse, nutritionally valuable fish and fish products which are often culturally preferred and easily accessed by the poor. Technological changes in aquaculture have dramatically increased fish supply, lowered relative fish prices, and reigned in price volatility. Policies that recognize and safeguard the diversity and complementarity of roles played by capture fisheries and aquaculture are needed to ensure that the transition in fisheries sustainably improves food and nutrition security in the global South.


      PubDate: 2013-11-10T00:08:55Z
       
  • Feeding capitals: Urban food security and self-provisioning in Canberra,
           Copenhagen and Tokyo
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 18 October 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): John R. Porter , Robert Dyball , David Dumaresq , Lisa Deutsch , Hirotaka Matsuda
      Most people live in cities, but most food system studies and food security issues focus on the rural poor. Urban populations differ from rural populations in their food consumption by being generally wealthier, requiring food trade for their food security, defined as the extent to which people have adequate diets. Cities rarely have the self-provisioning capacity to satisfy their own food supply, understood as the extent to which the food consumed by the city's population is produced from the city's local agro-ecosystems. Almost inevitably, a city's food security is augmented by production from remote landscapes, both internal and external in terms of a state's jurisdiction. We reveal the internal and external food flows necessary for the food security of three wealthy capital cities (Canberra, Australia; Copenhagen, Denmark; Tokyo, Japan). These cities cover two orders of magnitude in population size and three orders of magnitude in population density. From traded volumes of food and their sources into the cities, we calculate the productivity of the city's regional and non-regional ecosystems that provide food for these cities and estimate the overall utilised land area. The three cities exhibit differing degrees of food self-provisioning capacity and exhibit large differences in the areas on which they depend to provide their food. We show that, since 1965, global land area effectively imported to produce food for these cities has increased with their expanding populations, with large reductions in the percentage of demand met by local agro-ecosystems. The physical trading of food commodities embodies ecosystem services, such as water, soil fertility and pollination that are required for land-based food production. This means that the trade in these embodied ecosystem services has become as important for food security as traditional economic mechanisms such as market access and trade. A future policy question, raised by our study, is the degree to which governments will remain committed to open food trade policies in the face of national political unrest caused by food shortages. Our study demonstrates the need to determine the food security and self-provisioning capacity of a wide range of rich and poor cities, taking into account the global location of the ecosystems that are provisioning them.


      PubDate: 2013-10-20T23:03:25Z
       
  • Urbanization and farm size in Asia and Africa: Implications for food
           security and agricultural research
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 10 September 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): William A. Masters , with Agnes Andersson Djurfeldt , Cornelis De Haan , Peter Hazell , Thomas Jayne , Magnus Jirström , Thomas Reardon
      Urbanization and economic development have made global agriculture increasingly differentiated. Many hinterland farms remain largely self-sufficient, while farms closer to markets become increasingly specialized and linked to agribusinesses. Both semi-subsistence and commercialized farms remain family operations, with the few successful investor-owned farms found mainly for livestock and crops processed on site such as sugar, tea and oil palm. Meanwhile, demographic transition drives rapid change in farm sizes, with less land available per family until non-farm opportunities expand enough to absorb all new workers. Asia as a whole has now passed this turning point so its average farm sizes can rise, while in Africa average farm sizes will continue to fall for many years, posing special challenges in both hinterland and commercialized areas.


      PubDate: 2013-09-13T23:07:00Z
       
  • Market engagement and food insecurity after a climatic hazard
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 10 September 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): Mya Sherman , James D. Ford
      This paper conducts a systematic realist review to examine how market engagement interacts with vulnerability to food insecurity after a climatic hazard event, focusing on rural areas of the developing world. It examines who is able to engage in the market after a climatic hazard and the barriers and opportunities that this engagement presents to food security. In the review, households were less able to effectively engage in the market to maintain food security when they had limited pre-hazard resources and/or were unable to mobilize these resources due to the biophysical and socioeconomic context following the climatic event. It is important to consider the volition behind market engagement after a climatic hazard and the consequences of using the market to maintain food security.


      PubDate: 2013-09-13T23:07:00Z
       
  • Can there be a green revolution in Sub-Saharan Africa without large
           expansion of irrigated crop production?
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 12 September 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): Kenneth G. Cassman , Patricio Grassini
      Although large expansion of irrigated agriculture was a pivotal component of past green revolutions, it is not given much attention for Sub-Saharan Africa. At issue is whether this lack of attention is an oversight. Analysis of irrigated agriculture's role in past green revolutions provides insight to address this question. We conclude that expansion of irrigated rice area will likely be an essential component of achieving self-sufficiency in rice production by 2050. For maize it is much less certain and depends on whether the climate and soils in major Sub-Saharan Africa maize-growing regions are more similar to the harsher conditions in the U.S. Western Corn Belt or to the higher-yielding more reliable Eastern Corn Belt.


      PubDate: 2013-09-13T23:07:00Z
       
  • The U.S. drought of 2012 in perspective: A call to action
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 7 September 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): J.S. Boyer , P. Byrne , K.G. Cassman , M. Cooper , D. Delmer , T. Greene , F. Gruis , J. Habben , N. Hausmann , N. Kenny , R. Lafitte , S. Paszkiewicz , D. Porter , A. Schlegel , J. Schussler , T. Setter , J. Shanahan , R.E. Sharp , T.J. Vyn , D. Warner , J. Gaffney
      The United States is the world's largest exporter of major grain and oilseed crops. In the three-year period from 2008–2010, it produced 39% of global maize and 35% of global soybean and accounted for 49% and 46%, respectively, of total global exports in these commodities. It also contributed 17% of total global exports in wheat and 11% of total rice exports. A large disruption to U.S. production of these crops, as occurred during the U.S. drought of 2012, can have a substantial impact on international grain markets. In this opinion piece, we consider the severity of this drought event and the impact on grain prices in relation to previous droughts of similar magnitude and use this information to highlight priorities for global research on drought and crop productivity to help buffer against future climatic shocks to global food supply.


      PubDate: 2013-09-09T23:09:40Z
       
  • Demand side drivers of global food security
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 31 August 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): Anita Regmi , Birgit Meade
      Drawing upon a series of cross-country demand analyses conducted using International Comparison Program (ICP) data from 1980, 1996 and 2005, this paper highlights how consumer preferences for food evolve over time. Income and price elasticities were estimated for an increasing number of countries, reaching 144 in the 2005 ICP analysis. Consumers in lower income countries spend a higher share of income on food, are most responsive to income and price changes, and are increasingly diversifying their diets toward more protein and fat containing foods such as meats and fish. Consumers, in general, also make larger adjustments to non-food expenditures when food prices change than they do to food expenditures when the price of non-food items change.


      PubDate: 2013-09-01T23:10:09Z
       
  • Mineral industries, growth corridors and agricultural development in
           Africa
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 26 August 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): Lingfei Weng , Agni Klintuni Boedhihartono , Paul H.G.M. Dirks , John Dixon , Muhammad Irfansyah Lubis , Jeffrey A. Sayer
      An extractive industries boom in Africa is driving unprecedented expansion of infrastructure into sparsely populated regions. Much of the investment is in high-volume minerals such as iron and coal that will require heavy infrastructure and large settled workforces. New roads and railways are being built to support these industries. Mineral infrastructure is reinforcing the dynamic of designated “growth corridors”, which are increasingly determining settlement patterns and rural land use in Africa. These corridors are penetrating into areas where agriculture has been constrained by lack of access to markets. They could unleash a major expansion of arable crops in the Guinea and Miombo savannahs, tropical tree crops in Congo Basin rainforests and irrigated agriculture on the floodplains of several African river systems. Rapidly growing African cities are largely dependent on imported food but growth corridors linking them to hinterland areas could favour shifts to African-sourced foods. Governance weaknesses may allow outside investors to make land grabs along growth corridors and further marginalise poor smallholders. New pressures on environmentally sensitive areas may emerge. Policy changes are needed to avoid negative impacts of this major new development trend and to exploit the potential for poverty alleviation and food-security benefits.


      PubDate: 2013-08-28T23:02:55Z
       
  • Market-based approaches for governments of food-importing countries to
           manage food security risks
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 15 August 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): Julie Dana
      Though well-established in the commercial sector, the use of market-based risk management is not widespread in the public sector, particularly by governments. Recent volatility in food and in energy prices has awakened governments' interest in learning more about how to use these tools, and some countries are beginning to experiment with them. Although it is clear that food price shocks are problematic, many countries have only a partial understanding of the specific exposure to commodity price risk; details about exactly how and where it affects the national budget are critical. To implement the use of market-based tools, it is important to identifying trade-offs between expected cost and risk, and to ensure that there is a strong institutional framework in place to support the strategy.


      PubDate: 2013-08-16T23:02:06Z
       
  • research4life
    • Abstract: Publication date: July 2013
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 2, Issue 2




      PubDate: 2013-08-04T23:02:58Z
       
  • Reversing urban bias in African rice markets: A review of 19 National Rice
           Development Strategies
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 31 July 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): Matty Demont
      Economic development in poor countries is often hampered by urban bias. Partly as a result of historical urban bias, African countries have become heavily dependent on food imports with concomitant risks for food security as witnessed during the 2008 food crisis. African governments now recognize that they should reverse urban bias by investing in agriculture in order to decrease food import dependency. However, they typically focus primarily on supply-shifting investments that may be insufficient to render domestically produced food competitive, particularly in import-biased food markets. We review the national rice development investment strategies of 19 African countries and argue that in order to reverse urban bias in African rice markets, more resources will need to be allocated to value-adding and demand-lifting investments.


      PubDate: 2013-08-04T23:02:58Z
       
  • Market-mediated environmental impacts of biofuels
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 12 July 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): Thomas W. Hertel , Wallace E. Tyner
      This paper surveys the evidence on market-mediated environmental impacts of biofuels, with special attention to the indirect greenhouse gas emissions stemming from land cover change in the wake of increased demand for biofuel feedstocks. We find clear evidence that market mediated land use response to crop price changes has occurred over the past decade. However, despite all the research that has been done and all the advances made, there remains considerable quantitative uncertainty surrounding biofuels induced land use change. Obtaining precise estimates of these impacts is likely beyond the reach of current models and data.


      PubDate: 2013-07-15T23:01:38Z
       
  • Build it back better: Deconstructing food security for improved
           measurement and action
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 24 June 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): Jennifer Coates
      The challenge of measuring food security became increasingly thorny during the 1990s, when the number of conceptual elements proliferated in widely accepted definitions. There have been commendable recent advances in the development of simple, valid measures of “food access”. Yet most users apply single indicators interchangeably and capture only a portion of the full concept. Rather than tackling ‘food insecurity’ as a monolithic concept, food security assessment and action would be more effective if deconstructed into well-defined dimensions beyond the “availability, access, and utilization pillars”. Internationally recognized definitions and ethnographic literature support the isolation of five dimensions: (1) food sufficiency (2) nutrient adequacy (3) cultural acceptability, (4) safety, (5) certainty and stability. This paper traces the evolution of food security concepts and measures up through the first decade of the 21st century, proposes indicators to represent these five dimensions, and highlights areas where the development of new metrics is warranted.


      PubDate: 2013-06-25T23:08:08Z
       
  • A framework for analyzing the interplay among food, fuels, and biofuels
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 6 June 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): John Baffes
      This paper provides a framework for analyzing the complex relationship among food, fuels, and biofuels. It first notes that high energy prices increase the costs of producing food and can induce policies that divert food crops to the production of biofuels. Then, it argues that sustained high crude oil prices, in addition to rendering biofuels profitable, could also induce innovations by increasing the energy content of (existing or new) crops grown on arable land, in turn causing further food price increases. Hence, as we move forward, crude oil prices are likely to play an even more important role in shaping food price trends.


      PubDate: 2013-06-09T23:08:48Z
       
  • The status of bioenergy development in developing countries
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 2 June 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): Irini Maltsoglou , Tatsuji Koizumi , Erika Felix
      Following a period of increasing oil prices, bioenergy received a wake of renewed attention by policymakers as an alternative renewable energy strategy due to the potential for improving country level energy security, for increasing overall access to energy, stimulating rural development and for curbing greenhouse gas emissions. Nevertheless, concerns about the viability of this strategy and potential conflicts with food demand soon dampened the enthusiasm and raised a number of questions concerning environmental and social sustainability and, more specifically, food security. In reality though, with the exception of the US, Brazil and some European countries, production of modern bioenergy and more specifically liquid biofuels around the world is still limited, especially in the case of Africa where the sector is still in its infancy. The paper gives a detailed overview of production in the African, Asian and Latin American regions illustrating how the three regions of the developing world are working toward bioenergy development, the strategies and policies, and the main hurdles being encountered.


      PubDate: 2013-06-05T23:09:26Z
       
  • Biofuels and food prices: Separating wheat from chaff
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 30 May 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): Wallace E. Tyner
      Biofuels are produced from agricultural commodities, so they represent a competing demand for those commodities. Therefore, it is clear that biofuels have some impact on agricultural commodity prices, so the food–fuel debate surrounds the relative contribution of biofuels to agricultural commodity price increases compared with other drivers. In this paper we have argued that there are many causes for the increase in food commodity prices—not biofuels alone. These include global supply and demand trends, regional or commodity specific supply disruptions, changes in the value of the US$, macroeconomic issues such as recession or financial crisis, trade policy changes, and biofuels. As for biofuels, we have argued that one must distinguish between biofuels driven by market forces and biofuels driven by government policy. Clearly the biofuel industries in the US, Brazil, and Europe were created with government support. However, at least in the US, the market is the major driver today for corn based ethanol. We have also argued that higher commodity prices adversely affect the poor, particularly the urban poor. However, there is another side to this picture, which is the supply increases that can be induced all over the world via the higher commodity prices. If governments establish policies that are conducive to supply growth, the higher commodity prices offer an opportunity to at least partially close the yield gap between developing and developed countries, thereby helping poor farmers in developing countries. Developing country farmers have already shown that markets work with the huge expansion in cropped area in many regions due to higher commodity prices.


      PubDate: 2013-06-02T08:01:35Z
       
  • Biofuels in Brazil: Evolution, achievements and perspectives on food
           security
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 25 May 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): Luiz Augusto Horta Nogueira , Rafael Silva Capaz
      Liquid biofuels, as ethanol and biodiesel, supply 25% of the road transport fuel consumed in Brazil. Ethanol blending has been mandatory since 1931, pure ethanol has been used since 1975, and nowadays flex-fuel cars are widely used. In 2008, ethanol production reached 28Mm³, but recently, government efforts to reduce gasoline prices have reduced the demand for ethanol. In turn, biodiesel blending was launched in 2005, and B5 has been mandatory since 2010. In 2011, the land dedicated to production of these biofuels in Brazil was of 8.82Mha or 11.8% of total cultivated area, a considerable fraction of the land available, considering improvements in cattle breeding and agro-ecological zoning for bioenergy. Social development associated with biofuel programs has been relevant to food security. The Brazilian biofuel programs demonstrate the relevance of adopting efficient agro-industrial routes and the possibility of sound coexistence between bioenergy and other uses of agriculture.


      PubDate: 2013-05-28T23:03:42Z
       
  • How biofuels policies affect the level of grains and oilseed prices:
           Theory, models and evidence
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 25 May 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): Harry de Gorter , Dusan Drabik , David R. Just
      This paper synthesizes and critiques three approaches to the analysis of the recent booms in food grains and oilseeds commodity prices: the ‘perfect storm’; statistical time-series models; and models explaining how biofuels linked the fuel and agricultural markets, thus giving rise to a new era of commodity prices. We find that biofuel policies and corn markets were a key instigator of the sharp food commodities price rise in 2006 onwards. We argue that the price increase in the corn market had a spillover effect on the wheat market and caused policy responses and speculation, including hoarding, which caused rice prices to spike. We conclude that because of the sudden increase in commodity prices, the developing countries were unable to benefit from the higher prices even though they have comparative advantage in biofuels production.


      PubDate: 2013-05-28T23:03:42Z
       
  • The crisis in food price data
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 24 May 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): John Gibson
      Many studies estimate impacts of higher food prices on consumer welfare. Yet reliable data on real welfare levels in poor countries are rare since surveys prioritize collecting nominal living standards data over price data. Narrower questions about the impacts of prices on food quantity consumed and on the availability of nutrients are poorly answered. Most studies ignore coping responses that involve downgrading food quality to maintain quantity and therefore overstate nutritionally harmful effects of rising prices. A full accounting for the impacts of food prices on food security requires spatially detailed food price data and household survey data on both the quantity and the quality of foods. Surprisingly few developing countries have these required data.


      PubDate: 2013-05-24T23:02:38Z
       
  • Second generation biofuels and food crops: Co-products or competitors?
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 14 May 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): Wyatt Thompson , Seth Meyer
      Stylized experiments of an economic model show that second generation biofuels can hurt or help food security. Impacts depend critically on whether the feedstock competes with traditional crops or is a co-product in their production. Dedicated biomass, like warm season grasses, likely competes at least somewhat with food crop production. To the extent that agricultural land is allocated to dedicated biomass, food prices will increase. Biofuel from crop residues, such as corn stover and wheat straw, can lead to more land in these uses, potentially reducing food and feed prices. Second generation biofuel impacts also depend on policy mechanisms and market context. For example, the US biofuel mandates that encourage new biofuels might limit their ability to displace other biofuels.


      PubDate: 2013-05-17T00:32:15Z
       
  • Adapting crops and cropping systems to future climates to ensure food
           security: The role of crop modelling
    • Abstract: Publication date: March 2013
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 2, Issue 1
      Author(s): Robin B. Matthews , Mike Rivington , Shibu Muhammed , Adrian C. Newton , Paul D. Hallett
      Food production systems in the next decades need to adapt, not only to increase production to meet the demand of a higher population and changes in diets using less land, water and nutrients, but also to reduce their carbon footprint and to warmer temperatures and altered precipitation patterns resulting from climate change. Crop simulation models offer a research tool for evaluating trade-offs of these potential adaptations and can form the basis of decision-support systems for farmers, and tools for education and training. We suggest that there are four areas in adapting crops and cropping systems that crop modelling can contribute: determining where and how well crops of the future will grow; contributing to crop improvement programmes; identifying what future crop management practices will be appropriate and assessing risk to crop production in the face of greater climate variability.
      Highlights ► Crop simulation models are key tools to evaluate tradeoffs involved as cropping systems adapt to climate change and future demands. ► At the plant level, such models can help evaluate the costs and benefits to the plant of significant changes in physiological processes. ► Crop models can help evaluate and optimise alternative crop management practices, such as conservation agriculture. ► Crop models can provide a way of integrating different crop-related knowledge into decision-support systems.

      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • Delivering food security without increasing pressure on land
    • Abstract: Publication date: March 2013
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 2, Issue 1
      Author(s): Pete Smith
      The challenge of feeding 9 to 10 Billion people by 2050 may seem like a big enough challenge in itself, but we also need to achieve this feat whilst, at the same time, reducing adverse impacts of food production on a whole range of ecosystem services. One suggested response is “sustainable intensification” which entails delivering safer, nutritious food from the same area whilst maintaining ecosystem service provision. In this review, I examine sustainable intensification and consider alternatives such as management of food demand and waste reduction. I conclude that sustainable intensification has a role to play, but this must be accompanied by fundamental change in global food systems.
      Highlights ► Food production can increase by expanding agricultural area or increasing per-area productivity. ► Expanding agriculture into forests and natural areas is environmentally damaging. ► To meet future food demand per-area productivity must increase, through “sustainable intensification”. ► Sustainable intensification will be challenging, and will not be without environmental impact. ► The need for sustainable intensification can be reduced my managing demand and reducing food waste.

      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • Biofortification: Progress toward a more nourishing future
    • Abstract: Publication date: March 2013
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 2, Issue 1
      Author(s): Amy Saltzman , Ekin Birol , Howarth E. Bouis , Erick Boy , Fabiana F. De Moura , Yassir Islam , Wolfgang H. Pfeiffer
      Biofortification, the process of breeding nutrients into food crops, provides a sustainable, long-term strategy for delivering micronutrients to rural populations in developing countries. Crops are being bred for higher levels of micronutrients using both conventional and transgenic breeding methods; several conventional varieties have been released, while additional conventional and transgenic varieties are in the breeding pipeline. The results of efficacy and effectiveness studies, as well as recent successes in delivery, provide evidence that biofortification is a promising strategy for combating hidden hunger. This review highlights progress to date and identifies challenges faced in delivering biofortified crops.
      Highlights ► Biofortification is a sustainable strategy for delivering micronutrients. ► The strategy is targeted to rural populations in developing countries. ► Both conventional and transgenic methods are used to breed micronutrient-dense crops. ► Biofortified sweet potato delivery increased micronutrient intakes in target populations. ► Efficacy and effectiveness studies provide evidence for the promise of biofortification.

      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • Transforming agriculture in China: From solely high yield to both high
           yield and high resource use efficiency
    • Abstract: Publication date: March 2013
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 2, Issue 1
      Author(s): Jianbo Shen , Zhenling Cui , Yuxin Miao , Guohua Mi , Hongyan Zhang , Mingsheng Fan , Chaochun Zhang , Rongfeng Jiang , Weifeng Zhang , Haigang Li , Xinping Chen , Xiaolin Li , Fusuo Zhang
      The challenges facing agriculture in China are probably more severe than ever before. We have developed an integrated technology system in which the focus is on achieving both high crop productivity and high resource use efficiency (“double high” technology system) to ensure food security and environmental sustainability. The components comprise (1) significantly increased grain-yield through high-yield crop management, i.e. an optimal cropping system design and management well adapted to climate conditions; (2) greatly increased nutrient-use efficiency through root/rhizosphere management to optimize the nutrient supply intensity and composition in the root zone to maximize root/rhizosphere efficiency; (3) improved soil quality to ensure long-term food security by managing soil organic matter and eliminating soil physical, chemical and biological constrains and (4) enhanced agricultural sustainability through resource and environment management by increasing resource use efficiency, reducing nutrient losses and greenhouse gas emissions and minimizing negative ecological footprints. In our work in major agricultural regions of China, this system has been successfully tested and demonstrated through well-organized farmer associations, enterprises with improved products and government extension networks. The new “double high” concept has the potential to become an effective agricultural development path to ensure food security and improve environmental quality, especially in China and other rapidly developing economies where agricultural intensification must achieve and must be transformed from low-efficiency systems to achieving high yields with high resource use efficiency.
      Highlights ► We examined future transformation of agriculture in China. ► China must increase grain yield, resource use efficiency and protect environment. ► We proposed a “double high” model with high-yield and high resource-use efficiency. ► Food security and environment protection can be harmonized by the concept. ► New technologies and unique transfer ways in China support such as transformation.

      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • research4life
    • Abstract: Publication date: March 2013
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 2, Issue 1




      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • Is body mass index an appropriate proxy for body fat in children?
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 6 April 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): Colleen M. Doak , Daniel J. Hoffman , Shane A. Norris , Maiza Campos Ponce , Katja Polman , Paula L. Griffiths
      As the global prevalence of childhood overweight and obesity spreads to low and middle income countries, there is an increasing need for researchers to assess overweight and obesity in populations where child undernutrition still prevails. Although BMI (body mass index) cutoffs are widely used in research and project evaluations, they have only recently been included in WHO definitions for overweight and obesity in children. This review describes the history of how and why BMI was introduced as a proxy for adiposity in children, the scientific evidence and examples from epidemiological studies. Overall, BMI continues to be a valuable measure in children if the underlying assumptions of the criteria and cut-off values are considered. However, where BMI is associated with height, in children, we recommend using weight for height z-scores.
      Highlights ► In 1832 Quetelet introduced weight/stature3 as a body mass index for adults. ► In 1921, Rohrer introduced weight/stature3 to account for the dimensions of infants. ► Height has been found to be associated with height in some populations of children. ► There are known population differences in height, maturation and body composition. ► Current cutoffs for BMI may overstate obesity and overweight relative tounderweight.

      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • Managing food price instability: Critical assessment of the dominant
           doctrine
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 9 April 2013
      Source:Global Food Security
      Author(s): Franck Galtier
      Ever since the late 1980s, the management of agricultural price instability has been dominated both in academic and political circles by a single doctrine. Its domination is so strong that almost all research on this topic has since been abandoned. Based on a very extensive review of the theoretical and empirical literature, this paper provides a critical assessment of this doctrine as applied to grains. An examination of the degree to which the underlying assumptions of the doctrine are confirmed in real grain markets, and the effects generated if they are not, showed that the doctrine substantially underestimates (i) the magnitude of price instability generated by grain markets, (ii) the degree to which farmers and consumers in developing countries are exposed to this instability, and (iii) the resulting effects on welfare (including macroeconomic and long-term consequences). Shifts from doctrine recommendations are therefore justified. In particular, some kind of stabilization of grain prices appears to be necessary, both within developing countries and on international markets.
      Highlights ► We assessed the dominant doctrine on managing food price instability. ► The doctrine overestimates the ability of grain markets to stabilize prices. ► It underestimates DC farmer and consumer exposure to grain price instability. ► It underestimates the welfare effects of this exposure. ► Stabilizing grain prices in DCs is welfare-improving.

      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • FAO International Scientific Symposium (ISS) on the Measurement and
           Assessment of Food Deprivation and Undernutrition
    • Abstract: Publication date: March 2013
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 2, Issue 1
      Author(s): David Dawe



      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • Towards better measurement of household food security: Harmonizing
           indicators and the role of household surveys
    • Abstract: Publication date: March 2013
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 2, Issue 1
      Author(s): Calogero Carletto , Alberto Zezza , Raka Banerjee
      A variety of indicators are currently used for food security analysis, monitoring, and programming, and most agencies have their preferred variant on methods of data collection, aggregation, and analysis. This lack of consensus is reflected in an inefficient multiplicity of survey instruments collecting information on various dimensions of food and nutrition security, with tremendous variation in the content, quality, and quantity of the information collected. No single existing survey instrument will ever be able to collect all needed indicators at the desired periodicity, and no single institution has either the mandate or the ability to measure and monitor food security in its many dimensions on a global scale. However, with better coordination across institutions and survey efforts, the state of food security measurement worldwide can be greatly improved. This paper attempts to identify the elements of a strategy, built around a combination of short-term fixes and long-term methodological advancements, to reverse the existing trends of poor coordination and slow methodological innovation in food security measurement and monitoring. International focus on a small dashboard of indicators, collected on a regular basis by different stakeholders through a number of available data collection options, is feasible and can be partially achieved by repurposing existing surveys to better suit food security monitoring goals.


      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • From complexity to food security decision-support: Novel methods of
           assessment and their role in enhancing the timeliness and relevance of
           food and nutrition security information
    • Abstract: Publication date: March 2013
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 2, Issue 1
      Author(s): Nancy Mock , Nathan Morrow , Adam Papendieck
      Food and Nutrition Security Information (FNSI) is a critical tool for achieving food and nutrition security, yet FNSI efforts to date have not produced the intended impacts on policy and program decision making, largely due to shortcomings in available technologies and frameworks. The article reviews the evolution of FNSI efforts in the context of emerging technology and data collection techniques. A conceptual framework is provided to describe the evolution towards an FNSI characterized by integrating conventional and novel approaches to the collection, analysis and communication of information into a value stream that supports decision-making to achieve food security. Conclusions include the need to streamline and expand coverage of conventional information tools such as household surveys while facilitating the rapid uptake of analytical tools that leverage the novel, numerous, and rich data streams enabled by emergent information and communication technologies and dramatic increases in connectivity.
      Highlights ► Review the evolution of FNSI in the context of emerging technology. ► Decision support for food and nutrition security conceptualized as complex systems. ► Novel methods involve users as the drivers of FNSI decision support value stream. ► Broad trends in ICT are influencing the next major evolution of FNSI.

      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • Generating evidence on individuals' experience of food insecurity and
           vulnerability
    • Abstract: Publication date: March 2013
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 2, Issue 1
      Author(s): Agnes R. Quisumbing
      Many indicators of food security and vulnerability are reported at the household level, preventing policymakers from identifying how differences among individuals within the household affect individual food security and vulnerability. Using examples from three recent studies from Uganda, Bangladesh, and Ethiopia, the paper illustrates how using individual – rather than household-level measures allows a better understanding of three dimensions of food security: agricultural productivity, impacts of development interventions on well-being, and coping mechanisms in response to shocks. It then discusses methods to elicit information on individual experiences of food security and vulnerability, including the use of measures of gender disaggregation that go beyond headship, the use of individual measures of well-being, and modifications of household level questions on coping mechanisms.
      Highlights ► The paper reviews gains from using individual vs. household indicators of food security. ► Using sex of the household head vs. sex of the plot manager underestimates gender differences in agricultural productivity. ► Using household consumption and assets vs. individual nutritional indicators leads to different conclusions about agricultural programs. ► Standard questions about household coping mechanisms can be easily modified to look at vulnerable groups within the household.

      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • Towards overcoming the food consumption information gap: Strengthening
           household consumption and expenditures surveys for food and nutrition
           policymaking
    • Abstract: Publication date: March 2013
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 2, Issue 1
      Author(s): John L. Fiedler
      The dearth of nationally representative dietary assessment studies continues to severely constrain the nutrition evidence base and throttle the pace of global progress in improving nutrition. Despite their shortcomings, household consumption and expenditures surveys (HCESs) are increasingly being used to address the food and nutrition information gap because they contain a great deal of information about food acquisition and consumption; are done once every 3–5 years in more than 125 countries; have large samples (∼8500 households); are statistically representative at subnational levels; and are much less costly than other dietary assessment data sources. To date, the nutrition community's role has been that of a passive user of HCES that have already been conducted. Many HCES shortcomings, however, stem from design and implementation issues. If the nutrition community, with its unique skills and experiences were to get more proactively involved in the design, implementation and analyses of HCES, they could be strengthened substantially as a tool for evidence-based food and nutrition policy. This article describes the evolution in the use of HCES in addressing food and nutrition issues, identifies HCES shortcomings and distills a shared agenda and a strategy for the nutrition community to work on, together with already existing HCES stakeholders, to strengthen HCES. A two-tiered approach and process for implementing this work is described. The first tier of the approach consists of addressing a common set of activities at the global level, while the second tier is more country-level work that builds on a combination of the global-level work—including the adoption and implementation of some of outcome of the first tier activities—but may also include more idiosyncratic, country-specific work. The common global-level activities consist of addressing common, cross country, technical issues of questionnaire and survey design, implementation and data processing activities at the global level. A 115-country assessment of these aspects of HCES is already being conducted jointly by the World Bank–FAO–International Household Survey Network. This work aims to distill better practices and lessons, recommend alternative ways to address common HCES shortcomings, and establish a global research agenda for improving understanding and identifying tradeoffs involving critical issues. The second tier of the approach consists of recognizes that HCES design and methodology has to be adapted to each country's policy needs and strategies, while reflecting each country's technical and financial constraints and building on its own experiences. Second tier activities are country level activities, and they are where the real work of strengthening HCES has to be done. That work should consist of the merging of the two tiers of the approach to create a partnership for implementing rigorous, experimental studies of the major, unsettled measurement issues confronting HCES, while providing a more sound foundation of evidence for nutrition policy.
      Highlights ► Household consumption and expenditures surveys (HCESs) are increasingly used in nutrition analysis. ► We describe the appealing characteristics of HCES that have contributed to this trend. ► We identify HCES shortcomings for nutrition analysis. ► We distill a shared agenda and strategy for the nutrition community to work with existing HCES stakeholders to strengthen HCES.

      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • research4life
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2012
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 1, Issue 2




      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • What do we need to know about global food security?
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2012
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 1, Issue 2
      Author(s): Kenneth G. Cassman



      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • Global land availability: Malthus versus Ricardo
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2012
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 1, Issue 2
      Author(s): Eric F. Lambin
      Extensive and rapid conversion of productive lands around the world in response to multiple demands for land raises the concern that we risk running out of productive land globally. I discuss two competing views on the global availability of productive land. In an interpretation of a Malthusian view, a limited stock of suitable land leads to a strict competition between land uses and, eventually, to a shortage of productive land, with negative welfare impacts. In the Ricardian view, it becomes economically feasible to bring marginal land into use as prices of land-based commodities increase. Even though the stock of suitable land is finite, a geographic redistribution of land use, trade, and investments in land resources give access to more resources, but it comes at ever increasing economic, environmental and social costs. Global food security increasingly involves trading off food for nature.
      Highlights ► Multiple land uses compete for productive land that is increasingly scarce. ► Land use zoning can decrease conflicts between land uses. ► Ecological costs of land conversion is a greater concern than supply of suitable land. ► Food security involves trading off food for nature for sustainable food production. ► The “peak land” metaphor should be avoided as soil is a renewable resource.

      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • Integrating the complexity of global change pressures on land and water
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2012
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 1, Issue 2
      Author(s): Christoph Müller , Hermann Lotze-Campen
      Global agriculture is facing multi-faceted challenges, interacting with changing societies and changing environmental conditions. Major transitions in current agricultural systems are required to meet these challenges. Transition pathways need to be analyzed and facilitated in a much broader perspective, including the interaction with societal structures, non-food markets, and the Earth system. Especially the globalization of agricultural production offers potentials to increase productivity but can also endanger food security through volatile food prices or dispossession of rural poor. It thus requires better regulation and suitable institutional settings. Integrated assessment models are helpful tools for analyzing the complex interactions and for deriving multi-targeted development pathways.
      Highlights ► The growing pressure on land and water requires globally coordinated management. ► The interaction of agriculture with other sectors is intense. ► Need to be considered in assessments of future development paths. ► Integrated assessment tools are suitable starting points for better scientific understanding and policy advice.

      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • Nitrogen and water resources commonly limit crop yield increases, not
           necessarily plant genetics
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2012
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 1, Issue 2
      Author(s): Thomas R. Sinclair , Thomas W. Rufty
      Frequently, improved plant genetics is viewed as the path to increased crop yields. However, in this manuscript, we argue that yield increases most often result from a combination of improved genetics and increased availability of nitrogen and water resources. At this time, it is likely that resource availability is the main impediment to yield increase in many cropping systems. In developing regions, it appears that nitrogen availability limits crop yield. In developed regions, rainfall and water availability commonly impose a substantial constraint on further crop yield increase. Strategies are examined to enhance resource accumulation and use in cropping systems of the future.
      Highlights ► Historic yield increases associated with greater supply of nitrogen and water. ► Nitrogen for seeds needs to be accumulated in vegetative stage. ► Nitrogen accumulation in vegetative tissues limited by their storage capacity. ► Water use is quantitatively related to maximum yield. ► Yield in developed countries now often limited by water availability.

      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • Megatrends in agriculture – Views for discontinuities in past and
           future developments
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2012
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 1, Issue 2
      Author(s): Prem S. Bindraban , Rudy Rabbinge
      Despite great concerns to meet the ever growing food demand in the past, megatrends in agriculture has resulted in growing food availability per person and reducing adverse environmental impact. The bleak future that is portrayed to secure sufficient food for all can be resolved with increased ecological literacy and compliance with production ecological approaches. Yet, these opportunities may not be easily attained, certainly so with dominating dogmatic views on agro-ecological practices that do not comply with or even reject basic ecological principles.
      Highlights ► Ecological literacy leads the way to optimal use of scarce natural resources. ► Agriculture and the food system show both gradual improvements as well as technological and paradigm shifts to increased production efficiency and food security. ► Future demand for food and several non-food items can be met, when production ecological principles are pursued. ► Bright future development may be jeopardized by dogmas that do not comply with or even reject basic ecological principles.

      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • Evolution not revolution of farming systems will best feed and green the
           world
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2012
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 1, Issue 2
      Author(s): David J. Connor , M. Inés Mínguez
      The challenge to properly feed a world population of 9.2 billion by 2050, that must be achieved on essentially currently cropped area, requires that food production be increased by 70%. This large increase can only be achieved by combinations of greater crop yields and more intensive cropping adapted to local conditions and availability of inputs. Farming systems are dynamic and continuously adapt to changing ecological, environmental and social conditions, while achieving greater production and resource-use efficiency by application of science and technology. This article argues that the solution to feed and green the world in 2050 is to support this evolution more strongly by providing farmers with necessary information, inputs, and recognition. There is no revolutionary alternative. Proposals to transform agriculture to low-input and organic systems would, because of low productivity, exacerbate the challenge if applied in small part, and ensure failure if applied more widely. The challenge is, however, great. Irrigation, necessary to increase cropping intensity in many areas cannot be extended much more widely than at present, and it is uncertain if the current rate of crop yield increase can be maintained. Society needs greater recognition of the food-supply problem and must increase funding and support for agricultural research while it attends to issues of food waste and overconsumption that can make valuable reductions to food demand from agriculture.
      Highlights ► World food supply must increase by 70% to feed a population of 9.2 billion by 2050. ► Farmers require greater support to achieve greater yields and more crops on current cropped area. ► Major genetic advance may be required to maintain current rate of yield gain. ► Extra land needed for low-yield systems conflicts with nature conservation. ► Minimization of waste has more potential than dietary change to reduce food demand.

      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • Oil palm expansion transforms tropical landscapes and livelihoods
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2012
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 1, Issue 2
      Author(s): Jeffrey Sayer , Jaboury Ghazoul , Paul Nelson , Agni Klintuni Boedhihartono
      Oil palm is a highly profitable crop adapted to the humid tropics and the area devoted to this crop is likely to expand significantly in the future. It has many environmentally favourable attributes over its full life cycle. When well managed it has a positive carbon balance and when grown in a landscape mosaic it can play a role in biodiversity conservation. It has driven rapid economic growth in several tropical developing countries and contributed to the alleviation of rural poverty. Abuses during periods of rapid estate expansion into areas of natural forest and onto the lands of poor rural communities have led to criticism by environmental and social activists. With good governance oil palm can make valuable contributions to development and the resulting prosperity may free people to invest in better environmental practices.
      Highlights ► Oil palm has good environmental qualities but uncontrolled expansion has caused social and environmental harm. ► Oil palm has made major contributions to alleviating rural poverty; oil palm has a better carbon balance than many other crop. ► Oil palm in landscape mosaics can provide good biodiversity outcomes. ► Poor governance has allowed predatory corporations to expand their land holdings at the expense of poor people. ► Prosperity frees people to invest in longer term environmental sustainability.

      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • Can experience-based household food security scales help improve food
           security governance?
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2012
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 1, Issue 2
      Author(s): Rafael Pérez-Escamilla
      Experience-based food security scales (EBFSSs) have been shown to be valid across world regions. EBFSSs are increasingly been included in national food and nutrition assessments and food hardship items have been added to regional and global public opinion polls. EBFSSs meet the SMART criteria for identifying useful indicators. And have the potential to help improve accountability, transparency, intersectoral coordination and a more effective and equitable distribution of resources. EBFSSs have increased awareness about food and nutrition insecurity in the court of public opinion. Thus, it’s important to understand the potential that EBFSSs have for improving food and nutrition security governance within and across countries. The case of Brazil illustrates the strong likelihood that EBFSSs do have a strong potential to influence food and governance from the national to the municipal level. A recent Gallup World Poll data analysis on the influence of the “2008 food crisis” on food hardship illustrates how even a single item from EBFSSs can help examine if food security governance in different world regions modifies the impact of crises on household food insecurity. Systematic research that bridges across economics, political science, ethics, public health and program evaluation is needed to better understand if and how measurement in general and EBFSSs in particular affect food security governance.
      Highlights ► Experience-based food security scales (EBFSSs) are increasingly been used by governments. ► EBFSSs may influence food security governance from the national to the municipal level. ► EBFSSs can help document if food security governance modifies the impact of crises. ►EBFSSs transdisciplinary research is needed to improve food security governance.

      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • Confronting food price volatility
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2012
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 1, Issue 2
      Author(s): David Dawe



      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • Why stable food prices are a good thing: Lessons from stabilizing rice
           prices in Asia
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2012
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 1, Issue 2
      Author(s): David Dawe , C. Peter Timmer
      This paper describes the benefits and costs of managing food price instability in the context of promoting economic growth and poverty reduction in order to improve food security. Some key costs of stabilizing domestic food prices include disruption of international markets, crowding out of private traders if government procurement is too large or destabilizes expectations, and large financial costs if the gap between domestic and world prices is too large, although a well-run program need not incur most of those costs. In poor countries, stable staple food prices help prevent poor farmers and consumers from falling into poverty traps, promote farm-level investment, and encourage investment throughout the economy by reducing the “noise” in prices of other goods and by promoting social and political stability. Because of these benefits, domestic rice price stabilization has been an integral part of the development vision in Asia.
      Highlights ► Stable food prices help poor farmers and consumers avoid poverty traps. ► Stable food prices promote investment and growth in poor countries. ► Stable rice prices have been part of a strategic development vision in Asian countries. ► Cost-effective food price stabilization is challenging to implement, but feasible.

      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • International agreements to manage food price volatility
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2012
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 1, Issue 2
      Author(s): Christopher L. Gilbert
      The 2007–08 food price surge has prompted renewed concerns in relation to food security. I ask whether the International Commodity Agreements of the second half of the twentieth century may have lessons for new international agreements on food security. The answer is largely negative. It is important to avoid politicization of the discussions and to recognize differences across food commodities. I second the De Gorter and Just (2010) proposal for conditioning biofuel mandates on grain prices but also see a role for rice food security stocks as an expedient until export controls become subject to WTO disciplines.
      Highlights ► Commodity agreements have little relevance to food security arrangements. ► The 2008 rice market problem was availability in the face of export restrictions. ► Rice policy needs WTO export disciplines plus an international food security stock. ► Volatility of other grains prices resulted from the biofuels energy price link. ► A policy of price-contingent mandates would moderate volatility.

      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
  • Managing food price instability in East and Southern Africa
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2012
      Source:Global Food Security, Volume 1, Issue 2
      Author(s): T.S. Jayne
      This article intends to provide pragmatic guidance for avoiding the more severe problems of food price instability in east and southern Africa. I first summarize the empirical record of food price stabilization efforts in the region, and highlight recurrent aspects of farm survey data with implications for price stabilization strategies. I highlight the understudied problem of strategic interactions between the public and private sector in food markets, associated problems of credible commitment, and how such problems are often at the heart of food crises frequently witnessed in the region. It is argued that by accepting a moderate level of price fluctuation within established bounds under a rules-based approach to intervention, African governments will reduce their chances of facing severe food crises.
      Highlights ► While price stability may contribute to economic growth, stabilization policies have often not stabilized prices. ► Recurrent patterns in survey data can guide effective policy responses to price instability. ► Strategic interactions between the public and private sectors often precipitate food crises. ► Rules-based approaches to stabilizing the food system may help to avoid severe food crises

      PubDate: 2013-04-22T23:03:18Z
       
 
 
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