02-Planeta_manchette_175x100
Allegrini 2018

THERE IS A BIG GAP BETWEEN MULTI-FACETED AGRICULTURE IN THE FIRST WORLD AND RURAL AREAS IN THE SOUTHERN PART OF THE PLANET, ACCORDING TO MATTIA GALLETTI, TECHNICAL SPECIALIST OF IFAD, THE UNITED NATIONS INTERNATIONAL FUND FOR AGRICULTUR DEVELOPMENT

Today's agriculture is "multi-faceted" in developed countries and plays a more social role for those who cultivate land, while supporting vital infrastructures in developing countries to ensure solid and steady growth to give a future to people who would otherwise have no choice but to migrate to an unknown future, Mattia Prayer Galletti, lead technical specialist of IFAD, the International Fund for Agricultural Development of the United Nations told WineNews during "Terra Madre Salone del Gusto". Global agriculture is two-sided and there is a very wide gap between the developed world and the southern hemisphere countries - and therefore a completely different set of problems for each side.

According to Galletti, even though developed countries are now “in a period when agriculture all over the world is in crisis due to global reasons, such as globalization and climate change, as well as the fact that the agriculture population is getting older”, concerning agriculture today and tomorrow “there is some hope. The concept of farmers has changed. It is no longer the way our grandparents used to farm, now its role is multi-faceted: preservation of culture, links to the territory and management of natural resources. In some mountainous and hilly areas, which are abundant in Italy”, Galletti said, “agriculture also has the role of hydrogeological prevention, but mostly agriculture is a network and no longer an individual role, and young people understand the importance of sharing ideas”.
The merit belongs to the prevalence of digital technologies, because “new technologies and means of communication allow for different kinds of agriculture and competition that does not depend on foreign markets, but rather enhances opportunities on local markets, which allows for exchange of information. And for these generations of farmers, coming here to Terra Madre is a continuous source of wealth”.
Unfortunately, if one abandons the developed countries, the prospective is not very rosy.
“My work”, pointed out Galletti, “is specifically in the southern countries of the world, where the problems are quite different. IFAD operates as a financial institution to finance projects to combat rural poverty, and even today the majority of the poor in the world live in rural areas. They live on agriculture, so our target is the small agriculture farm, because there are 500 million small farms that produce food for 80% of the population, and these are the companies to protect and enhance. They need to be protected because they are decreasing in number, partly due to economic inequalities, which brings about an increasing concentration of land ownership”, and therefore “in some regions the number of small companies is decreasing and the number of laborers is increasing”. This, Galletti warned, is a problem for everyone, and one that we deal with every day in Italy and abroad.
“It is evident that in some regions in the world a population explosion is under way, especially in Africa, so millions of young people are coming into the labor market but if they do not find the necessary support in agriculture they have to move on and go to cities or abroad. And this”, he concluded, “is a problem that is arriving on our shores. We must find ideas to enhance this agricultural potential, and consider it an opening to give these young people the opportunity to put their ideas on the board. And when we succeed in doing so, the results are impressive”.

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