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Over the past two decades, and at a time the African continent was facing rapid growth in population and urbanization, the food and agriculture situation in Africa has undergone a drastic deterioration; the food production and consumption per person has fallen below nutritional requirements.

The shortfall in food production, coupled with high levels of post-harvest losses and periodic and severe shortages, has led to rapidly increasing dependence on food imports, resulting in a drain on foreign exchange resources and creating serious major constraints in financing the development of African economies. At the root of the food problem in Africa is the fact that Member States have not usually accorded the necessary priority to agriculture, both in the allocation of resources and in giving sufficient attention to policies for the promotion of productivity and improvement of rural life.

For an improvement in the food situation in Africa, the fundamental requisite is a strong political will to channel a greatly increased volume of resources to agriculture, to carry through essential reorientations of social systems, to apply policies that will induce reorientations of social systems, to apply policies that will induce small farmers and members of agricultural cooperatives to achieve higher levels of productivity, and to set up effective machineries for the formulation of relevant programs and for their execution. The development of agriculture, however, should not be considered in isolation, but integrated within the economic and social development processes. Emphasis should also be put on the latter aspect, particularly on the problem of improving the conditions of rural life.

For an effective agricultural revolution in Africa it is essential to involve the youth and to arrest the rural-to-urban drift. Policies have to emphasize consistently the need not only to improve the living conditions on the farms but also to increase farm real incomes as a means of making agriculture more attractive and remunerative. New dimensions of inter-country cooperation are called for, but the primary responsibility for a breakthrough in food and agriculture lies with individual Member States operating in their respective national contexts.

Over the period 1980 to 1985 the objective should be to bring about immediate improvement in the food situation and to lay the foundations for the achievement of self-sufficiency in cereals and in livestock and fish products. Priority action should be directed to securing a substantial reduction in food wastage, attaining a markedly higher degree of food security, and bringing about a large and sustained increase in the production of food, especially of tropical cereals, with due emphasis on the diversification of agricultural production. Urgent measures are recommended in each of these areas.


Aims & Objectives of FOFF