United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)

Final statement 5 June 2018 1
ECOSOC Multi-Stakeholder Forum on Science,
Technology and Innovation for the SDGs
“Session 8: Supporting the implementation of the Technology Facilitation Mechanism – the way forward for joint action”.
Statement by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Delivered by the Director of the FAO Liaison Office to the UN, Carla Mucavi
6 June 2018, United Nations
Dear Chair, dear Colleagues from the UN System
Distinguished Delegates, Ladies and Gentlemen,
Innovation is the central driving force which will support the rapid transformation of our food and agriculture systems so that they are more sustainable, resilient and inclusive. Family farmers are also central to this effort. There are more than 570 million family farms in the world and they operate about 75% of the world’s agricultural land.
Recently the UN General Assembly proclaimed 2019–2028 the United Nations Decade of Family Farming. The General Assembly resolution gives particular attention to innovation, recognizing “the important role of science, technology, innovation and entrepreneurship in supporting smallholders, including pastoralists and family farmers, in particular women and youth in rural areas”.
The General Assembly called upon FAO and IFAD to lead the implementation of the Decade. In this context, FAO will be organizing The first International Symposium on Agricultural Innovation for Family Farmers: Unlocking the potential of agricultural innovation to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, in Rome, from 21 to 23 November 2018.
The symposium is conceived as a dynamic multi-stakeholder and multidisciplinary forum. It is expected to encourage increased investments in
Final statement 5 June 2018 2
agricultural innovation at all levels, including the development of appropriate national innovation strategies in support of countries’ efforts to achieve the SDGs.
The Objectives of the Symposium on Agricultural Innovation for Family Farmers are to:
1. Serve as a global knowledge and partnership platform;
2. Increase understanding of the drivers of innovation and the main constraints;
3. Propose ways to unlock the potential of innovation in agriculture;
4. Celebrate inspiring success stories;
5. Catalyze partnerships and boost public and private investments to scale up agricultural innovation.
The Symposium is also envisioned as a direct contribution to the STI Forum in support of the implementation of the Technology Facilitation Mechanism – the way forward for joining, focused on Agriculture Innovation.
We look forward to your participation.
Thank you for your attention.