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Pest and disease undermine food security

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The Country Representative of the Food and Agriculture Organization or FAO in Liberia Dr. Marc Abdala has disclosed that food security in Liberia has been undermined by the pest and disease outbreak in the country.

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Dr. Abdala says FAO is analyzing how food and agriculture should evolve in order to face the impact of climate change. According to him, erratic weather patterns and increase of pest and disease outbreaks are effecting agricultural productivity and therefore, undermining global food security in the country.

The FAO Country Representative spoke recently in Monrovia at official program for the observance of World Food Day held at the Ministry of Agriculture in Gardnersville, along the Somalia Drive.

Dr. Abdala stressed the importance of food security here, adding that agriculture must take major ground, and citizens that are involved in agricultural activities must put in more time to produce food that will end hunger in the country.

He noted that climate change is already undermining the entire sector, so more is needed to end hunger and all other forms of malnutrition by 2030. According to him, nearly 800 million people are on the increase of food, while almost 160 million children who are under age five, are stranded from this situation.

He told the audience that a conference held last December in Paris, France countries around the world included agriculture in their nationally determined contribution. The FAO Rep. pointed out that the action to promote resilience in agriculture is cut across the usual distinction between adaptation and mitigation.

Also speaking at the program, the World Food Program Country Director Madam Julie MacDonald said WFP sees food day as everybody’s business, because everybody needs food to survive.

She said in order for World Food Day to became a success, WFP was highlighting the need for various stakeholders to form bold and constructive partnership between governments, and business organizations that will create the requisite momentum towards achieving Zero Hunger and shaping a brighter future for millions of children.

Meanwhile Liberia’s Acting Minister of Agriculture Charles N. McClain said the issue of food security must be addressed as a country, saying “Liberians should always know that agriculture is the key to the growth, and development of any country.

Acting Minister McClain said Liberians should also realize that only themselves can create and produce their own food, if hunger should be ended in the country. Liberians practice subsistent farming, which is barely sustainable in a short wide rather than mechanized farming.

By Lewis S. Teh-Editing by Jonathan Browne

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