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May 20, 2010

Obama Administration Launches "Feed the Future" Initiative Addressing Global Food Security

On 20 May 2010 Dr. Rajiv Shah, administor of USAID announced the launch of the new "Feed the Future" initiative at a symposium organized by the Chicago Council for Global Affairs.  The mission of the initiative is to provide the "U.S. government’s new architecture for food security." 

Remarks at this unveiling ceremony were also made by U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack; U.S. State Department Counselor and Chief of Staff, Cheryl Mills; Namanga Ngongi, President, Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa; Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, President, Republic of Liberia; Catherine Bertini, former Executive Director, World Food Program; and Dan Glickman, former Secretary, U.S. Department of Agriculture.

The architecture or "road map" for the initiative in provided in the Feed the Future Guide (May 2010).  This provides an outline for how the Obama administration plans to use the $3.5 billion that the President pledged for global food security at the 2009 G-8 Summit in L’Aquila, Italy.  Total commitments pledged by the G-8 for global food security (including the U.S. pledge) amount to $18.5 billion.

According to Dr. Shah, "Feed the Future seeks to align resources with country-owned plans and foster sustained, multi-stakeholder partnerships to reduce hunger and poverty. Through these long-term, large-scale investments in a small number of partner countries, Feed the Future will concentrate resources on investment plans with proven approaches. Included in these plans will be support for women as agricultural producers and as critical actors for creating a food secure world."  (To see the 20 specific countries chosen as targets for this program see the previous blog article, USAID Targets 20 Countries for "Feed the Future" Initiative, 24 April 2010).

Feed the Future will devote approximately 9% of its resources to agricultural research.  It expects that this allocation will be matched by the host nation, private sector, and other partner investments.  The goal is that agricultural research should improve markets, increase food supplies, and reduce food prices.

For more see:

"Announcement of United States’ Feed the Future Initiative: United States reaffirms commitment to address global hunger, food security," U.S. Department of State, Bureau of International Information Programs, www.America.gov, 20 May 2010.

Tutwiler, M. Ann. Feed the Future Initiative Powerpoint, U.S. Department of Agriculture, 19 February 2010.

U.S.A.I.D., Feed the Future Guide, May 2010.

"U.S. Government to Release Feed the Future Guide at Chicago Council Symposium on Agriculture and Food Security," Chicago Council on Global Affairs, Media Advisory, 13 May 2010.

About Margaret

CEO and Curator (The Food Museum) | Managing Director and Chief Editor (GR2 Global LLC) | Educator (UCLA PhD) | Researching and writing on global food issues, nutrition and health, sustainability, history (preservation), conservation (natural resources), and design.
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