How innovation can help strengthen the sustainability of food systems and prevent future pandemics?
Time: Tuesday, 19. January 2021, 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. (CET)
Languages: Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Russian, Spanish
FAO organized a virtual High Level Panel on “How innovation can help strengthen the sustainability of food systems and prevent future pandemics”. The interactive discussion among senior government officials and the private sector focused on the impacts of the pandemic on food and agriculture.
In her opening speech Ms Julia Klöckner, Federal Minister of Food and Agriculture of of Germany, highlighted the critical role of agriculture ministers in consistently implementing and complying with the One Health approach, given that most new viral diseases in the last years were of animal origin.
The panel discussed the One Health Approach, preventing future pandemics, innovative policies and the use of digital technologies in response to the pandemic. The panelists shared their experiences and responses to cope with the challenges posed by COVID-19. In this context, the Minister of Agriculture of South Africa outlined its experience monitoring animal movement inside the Kruger National Park, which alerts if wildlife comes into contact with domestic animals. The Minister of Agriculture of Uzbekistan and the Deputy Minister of Agriculture of Switzerland presented their innovative policies to improve food security and respond and later prevent future pandemics.
The Chief Executive Officer of the Syngenta Group provided the private sector perspective on the panel. He shared the examples of Syngenta’s work to improve farming practices and highlighted the examples from China, where it promotes farmers’ adoption of modern practices.
FAO’s Director-General reiterated the important role of innovation as a response to the COVID-19 and further pandemics, the importance of scientific information, political efforts and the need to work together with farmers and the private sector.