Global conference on women in agriculture set to roll

A Kutubu woman planting a rice seedling during training by the PNG Women in Agriculture

The world’s first conference on women in agriculture will be staged at the Indian National Agricultural Science Centre in New Delhi from March 13-15, 2012. With the goal: ‘Empowering Women for Inclusive Growth in Agriculture’, women farmers across the global will be given an opportunity to establish a dialogue to work together to close the gender gap in agriculture, especially to highlight policies and reforms that empower women in developing countries to improve agricultural productivity and nutrition and reduce hunger and poverty.

The conference themes include assessing women’s empowerment in agriculture, agricultural Innovations for reducing drudgery, assessing women’s empowerment in agriculture, agricultural innovations for reducing drudgery, linking Women to markets, role of women in household food and nutritional security, access to assets, resources and knowledge (policies and services, and impact and responses to climate change related risks and uncertainties. In addition, there will be Working Group discussions to have a Framework for Action on engendering agricultural research, education and extension.

The three-day event is sponsored by the Indian Council of Agricultural Research and the Asia-Pacific Association of Agricultural Research Institutions with the support from Trust for Advancement of Agricultural Sciences, Global Forum on Agricultural Research, Research Association of Gender in Agriculture, USAID, Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research, and the International Development Research Centre.

“Women farmers represent more than a quarter of the world’s population. Women comprise, on an average, 43 per cent of the agricultural work force in developing countries, ranging from 20 per cent in Latin America to 50 per cent in Eastern Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa. Yet women have less access than men to agriculture related assets, inputs and services,” according to the Global Conference on Women in Agriculture website.

“Had they enjoyed the same access to productive resources as men, women could boost yield by 20-30 per cent; raising the overall agricultural output in developing countries by two and a half to four per cent. This gain in production could lessen the number of hungry people in the world by 12-17 per cent, besides increasing women’s income.”

Read more here.

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