The expansion of livestock should feature prominently in agriculture policy

Knowledge brokering01 Nov 2010Harm Evert Waalkens

Harm Evert Waalkens, attending the Global Conference on Agriculture, Food Security and Climate Change this week, comments on the responsibility of the international community to address the problems of hunger, poverty and climate change. Agriculture is key in food security, he writes in his personal blog, and farmers should be taken seriously, as they are the first link in the food production chain. Importantly, policy makers need to anticipate changing diets that contain yet more animal protein, coupled with population growth and a warming planet. Far more attention must therefore be directed towards the ‘responsible expansion of livestock, the growing of large quantities of raw materials for cattle feed and the economical water use’, Waalkens argues.

He concludes that it would be wrong to assume that the market is self-regulating. That is why Sub-Saharan African countries should take more control of their own food security by joining forces. Following similar policies of the European Union or the United States, they should be working towards a ‘shared agricultural policy’.

Read more about the issue on the website of Harm Evert Waalkens (in Dutch).