CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA—The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Syngenta International AG to support agriculture and food security activities in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Under this MOU, USAID and Syngenta will further collaborate in research and development and smallholder capacity building, working with key agriculture and food security partners including scientists, entrepreneurs, policy makers and other donors. Syngenta and USAID already work together in many countries and will broaden their relationship through this MOU.
This commitment advances agricultural development and food security goals set by developing country governments and supported by USAID through the U.S. Government’s global hunger and food security initiative, Feed the Future, which is part of the U.S. contribution to the New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition.
As announced in May 2012, Syngenta has committed to invest over $500 million over 10 years in Africa. Under the MOU, Syngenta and USAID together will build the capacity of smallholder farmers to adopt and safely use technologies that increase their yields through training, demonstrations and other approaches. With USAID, Syngenta will work in specific New Alliance countries and explore ways to increase growers’ use of technologies in crops such as potatoes and will expand smallholder access to tools such as crop insurance and seed treatment.
“Every night, nearly 870 million people in the world go to bed hungry,” said USAID Administrator Dr. Rajiv Shah. ”Scaling the adoption of innovative technologies like drought-tolerant seeds and crop insurance can build the foundation for sustainable food security. By strengthening our partnership with Syngenta, we can reduce hunger and undernutrition across three different continents and help bring the end of extreme poverty within reach.”
”Our collaboration with USAID is part of our ambition to enable a worldwide step-change in farm productivity,” said Mike Mack, Chief Executive Officer, Syngenta. “Public private partnerships such as this, drawing on the strengths of each party, will be catalysts for transforming agriculture by improving knowledge and technology in farming especially in developing markets.”
Announced by President Obama at the 2012 G-8 Summit, the New Alliance is a shared commitment between African governments, G-8 members and the private sector to work together to accelerate investments in agriculture to improve productivity, livelihoods and food security for smallholder farmers. Feed the Future is the United States’ contribution to this global effort. Feed the Future supports countries in developing their own agriculture sectors to generate opportunities for economic growth and trade, particularly for smallholder farmers, many of whom are women.
Last year, the U.S. Government’s Feed the Future initiative helped more than 7 million food producers adopt improved technologies or management practices that can lead to more resilient crops, higher yields, and increased incomes. The initiative, led by USAID, also reached nearly 12 million children last year through nutrition programs, which can prevent and treat undernutrition and improve child survival. To learn more about Feed the Future, visit www.feedthefuture.gov.
Syngenta is one of the world’s leading companies with more than 27,000 employees in over 90 countries dedicated to our purpose: Bringing plant potential to life. Through world-class science, global reach and commitment to our customers we help to increase crop productivity, protect the environment and improve health and quality of life. For more information about us please go to www.syngenta.com.
This press release originally appeared on the USAID website.