For nearly four decades, the partnership between the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the International Center for Advanced Mediterranean Agronomic Studies (CIHEAM) has engendered advanced ideas and knowledge in the service of food security, sustainable agriculture, and fisheries, or in favor of sustainable and inclusive rural development in the Mediterranean. Driven by these common objectives, which have generated quality expertise, FAO and CIHEAM have jointly contributed to political dialogue, the implementation of programs and projects, awareness-raising, and capacity-building activities for various players in the region, in particular by putting emphasis on gender and youth.
Based on the success of this unique partnership, and to discuss new areas of cooperation, the Director General of FAO Mr Qu Dongyu, and the Secretary General of CIHEAM Mr Teodoro Miano, accompanied by their respective collaborators, had a working meeting at FAO headquarters on 20 June 2023.
"It is becoming urgent to accelerate the transitions for more sustainable and equitable agri-food systems in the Mediterranean region which is currently facing various crises and is seeing the reappearance of food insecurity", indicated CIHEAM Secretary General Mr. Teodoro Miano, adding that “(…) such challenges can only be overcome with the power of partnerships and in particular with the existing synergies with FAO".
FAO Director-General Mr Qu Dongyu and CIHEAM Secretary General Mr Teodoro Miano recognized that food systems are failing to provide decent livelihoods to large sections of the population, due to growing social disparities and climate degradation. Recognizing that a transition to more sustainable and resilient agrifood systems will accelerate the achievement of the 2030 Agenda at the country level, they recalled the need to foster a change in the current perception of the "Mediterranean diet". More than a sound diet for human health, it must be considered a pillar for sustainable development in the Mediterranean in line with the ambitions of green and blue economies in the region.
As such, they considered that the SustainableFood Systems - Mediterranean Platform (SFSMED Platform), co-developed by the FAO, the CIHEAM, and the UfM, makes it possible to engage innovative multi-stakeholders, to promote the transdisciplinary sharing of knowledge and to accelerate the transition towards a sustainable, equitable and inclusive transformation of food systems in the region. This tripartite platform, which also allows the development of joint projects, is already an additional means of attracting and mobilizing public and private investments.
Learn more about the FAO - CIHEAM partnership here
Advancing Sustainable Rural Development in the Mediterranean