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Daily Times

Published Date: Dec 10, 2014

‘Pakistan has made remarkable progress in food security’

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.

Source : http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/business/10-Dec-2014/pakistan-has-made-remarkable-progress-in-food-security