Global gender equality in agriculture looks bleak. The Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations (FAO) created a short video highlighting the facts:
- 1.1 billion women worldwide lack the same access to land, seeds, water, and agricultural training, tools, and technologies as men.
- These under-privileged women have the potential to produce 20 to 30% more food than they currently produce.
- This additional food could eliminate hunger for 150 million people.
Female food producers have the power to boost food security, but in some parts of the world, they don’t have the opportunity to fulfill that promise. That’s an unfortunate — and largely invisible — dilemma for us all.
You Can Learn. You Can Help.
Information is knowledge, and knowledge enables action. If you want to learn more about how to influence women’s rights in agriculture:
- Watch the FAO’s video on global gender equality in agriculture.
- Acquaint yourself with the FAO’s gender equality efforts.
- Discover the Cultures of Resistance Make Food Not War movement.
- Know and support Madre — an organization supporting womens’ rights globally.
- Check out the Important Media Network’s Women’s Rights Week posts.
The USDA’s 2007 Census of Agriculture showed there were over 300,000 women-operated farms in the U.S. — a 29% increase over 2002. It’s great to see American women forging their own agricultural ways and owning them. I’m just beginning to understand how global women’s rights affect our world food systems. This topic lives largely outside my comfortable little sphere. But if you’re like me, you’ll want to read, learn, and help.
I welcome your feedback and advice.