With 2014 already around the corner, one will wonder what the year will mean for smallholder farmers across the world. The United Nations declared 2014 the International Year of Family Farming (IYFF), my Family as well as millions of Small holder farming families across the world are planning for the next farming season. Be it crop farming, animal farming or both, small holder family farmers have the potentials to succeed, improve food security for their family and the community they live in. The big question is, what does this declaration mean for us Family farmers?
Estimates indicates that there are a staggering figure of over 500 million family farms in the world cultivating less than 2 hectares of land, with family farming been a predominant form of Agriculture and main food producer in developing countries of the world. For food security to be improved and sustainability promoted, there is a strong need to recognize the efforts of these small holders who work tirelessly to achieve food security for their families and their communities. With the increasing population expected to hit the 9 billion mark by 2050, and climate change effects affecting Agricultural production, nothing comes closer to achieving sustainable food production than family farming.
According to the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO): “The international Year of Family farming gives us a clear opportunity to highlight the strategic role of family farmers in rural development but also to promote policy and strategy changes that will strengthen their capacities”, to this end, in 2014 my blog posts will focus most importantly on promoting Youth in Agriculture and Agribusiness who support their family farms, why? The answer is simple; it’s a proven fact that when someone is commended for their efforts they tend to achieve more. As the population of older farmers in Family farms increases, there is a strong need for youth involvement in Agriculture across the world. Yes, youth should not fold their hands like it’s not their business; fact is that it is actually their business. What if you wake up one morning to an increased food price or discover one day that the price of food stuff is the highest item on your budget?
Now is the time youths should sit back and think. Why is my family farm still stagnant? What can I do to utilize the available resources to turn my family farm to a sustainable Agribusiness venture? For many rural youths, this family farm was what made you have the higher education you have acquired today. Don’t, I repeat don’t turn your back away from what fed you and made you what you are! Acquire the right trainings, management education, draw a great business plan, have the big picture that will take your family farm to the next level but start small. Are you a Youth supporting your family farm, write us lets share your stories, inspirations, successes and advise to the world!