‘Pakistan has made remarkable progress in food security’

December 10, 2014

ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for National Food Security Sikandar Hayat Khan Bosan on Tuesday said Pakistan has made some remarkable progress in different areas including agriculture and food security during the last several decades.

The minister said, with regard to the agricultural sector, Pakistan was now producing enough food for its population and also exporting significant quantities of various food commodities, including, rice, fruits and livestock products.

He was addressing Food Security Session of Sustainable Development Conference jointly organised by SDPI, FAO, and IFAD & WFP. However, he said, much needs to be done to ensure that every Pakistani has access to safe and nutritious food at the household level. This has particularly been a challenge for the poor sections of the society, and the problem has been exacerbated by various shocks, particularly the frequent natural disasters.

Bosan said that the government attaches high priority to food security and the goal is to achieve a society free from hunger and malnutrition. They have thus taken a number of initiatives in that direction. These include initiative for agriculture and food security policy with sharper focus on productivity enhancement, value addition and ensuring better return to the farmers particularly small farm holders.

The minister said that Pakistan’s joining of scaling up nutrition (SUN) movement, and the initiation of national zero hunger and family farming programme. Energy, water and food security are identified as one of the seven important pillars in the Vision 2025 document announced by the government where the aim is to reduce the proportion of food insecure population from 60% to 30%.

Bosan stated that it would be important to note that according to FAO, globally maintaining the momentum of growth in agriculture productivity will remain crucial in the coming decades as production of essential foods needs to be increased by 60 percent if it is to meet expected demand growth. Therefore, in his opinion, they must agree that without a thriving agriculture ensuring food security would be an illusion.

He said that he was very pleased to lead a high level inter-ministerial delegation to Brazil in mid-2014 and they greatly benefited from the Brazilian experience. He has said that he had developed some pilot action plans for zero hunger and family farming in Pakistan and they are soon planning to launch pilot projects in this regard. He said he would also like to welcome partnership with various international organisations including the United Nations, and mutual cooperation with various governments in their efforts. Daily Time – Agriculture Sectors, Agriculture, Agriculture Product, Exports, Research, Food Security

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