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Viewpoint: To boost sustainable farming, new UN Food and Agriculture Organization chief should promote science-based policies

| June 20, 2019

The United Nations body is about to elect a new director‑general. The choice will affect the entire globe for years to come …. That’s why the [upcoming] election …. of the new director-general of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) is important.

The Rome-based intergovernmental body …. is the pre-eminent international voice on almost every issue touching on food and agriculture. The agency and its leader …. wield considerable influence on global and local policies and play a key part in agricultural research. Member nations must choose the right person for the job.

[T]he FAO has helped to restructure farming industries and the livestock trade to reduce the risk of emerging infectious diseases. It has scientists …. on its staff, collaborates with academic institutions and researchers to inform its policies, and makes science-based recommendations, such as on antibiotic use in farmed animals and the use of genetically modified crops and livestock.

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The future challenges for the agency are huge. It must help to steer food production in many different ecosystems to adapt to climate change as well as the extreme weather events that will accompany it.

Read full, original article: Pick a leader with vision for the Food and Agriculture Organization

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