“Climate change means it is no longer business as usual. We need fundamental change, a revolution in the way we farm in Africa”
This was the message to farmers in southern Africa on World Food day, from Dr Theo de Jager, president of Southern African Confederation of Agricultural Unions (SACAU).
SACAU celebrated the day that falls on 16 October under the theme “Climate is changing, Food and agriculture must too”. According to the organisation sustainable agricultural practices are therefore essential to address these challenges, since climate change poses the threat to negatively affect food production and farmers’ productivity.
“The world must adopt to more resilient and sustainable forms of agricultural systems such as Climate smart agriculture (CSA) that can offer a strategic approach in transforming the future of agriculture and promote food security,” the organisation states.
According to Ishmael Sunga, CEO of SACAU, farmers’ organisations should lead the way forward to ensure that farmers are prepared for the ever changing agricultural landscape.
“Farmers’ organisations play a critical role in ensuring that the complex and dynamic developments that lie ahead don’t leave smallholder farmers behind, so that they can manage the risks, and opportunities, that come with the future,” says Mr. Ishmael Sunga, CEO of SACAU. “The modernisation of African farmers’ organisations needs to include the use of public-private partnerships, improvement of logistics, and the use of digital solutions for issues such as training, so that it becomes more accessible at a lesser cost,”
As part of their commitment to food security, the organization said southern African farmers are supporting global drives to ensure agriculture meets the challenges of climate change in a quest towards zero hunger by 2030.
Estimates of the Food and Agricultural organisation state that agricultural production, that includes crops, livestock, fisheries and aquaculture, will have to increase by about 60 % by 2050 to feed the growing global population.