Boosting production and income of Ethiopian women

Photo credit: FAO

Members of the cooperative whose cactus pear marmalade will soon reach Italian tables.

Ethiopian women cooperative increases incomes thanks to FAO-Eataly partnership

Cactus pear marmalade to join more traditional jams on Italian shelves

A cooperative of women in Ethiopia is set to reach the international market thanks to a partnership between Italian gourmet food store Eataly and FAO.

The two joined forces in 2013 to support family farmers around the globe in boosting their production and finding ways to reach new overseas customers. The work with the women’s cooperative is one example of this collaboration.

For a few years Tsega Gebrekidan Aregawi ran a small kiosk in the northern Ethiopian town of Mekelle, where local university students would stop by to purchase fresh fruit juice, biscuits and homemade marmalades on their way to and from class.

It was a small operation. At that time Tsega could hardly imagine that some of her own products might someday fly from Africa to reach international markets.

But things changed last year when FAO and the Italian food chain Eataly reached out to her and her five-woman cooperative with a challenging offer.

Founded in northern Italy in 2007, Eataly has grown into a global, high-quality food and beverage chain that combines culinary excellence with tradition — with a special focus on small-scale production, sustainability, and fair trade.

FAO and Eataly offered Tsega and her colleagues support in producing more cactus pear marmalade, which would be then bought and shipped to European tables.

The group rose to the challenge. So far, they’ve produced 4,000 jars of marmalade and are now looking at using the revenues to even expanding their output and the variety of what they produce.

To help them in this effort, trainings were organized to help them improve their performance during harvesting as well as to increase their quality standards. The Ministry of agriculture has been providing technical assistance throughout.

A better future

Over the last few months, Tsega and her colleagues have been working hard to produce over 1,500 kg of jam that meet Ethiopian and European food safety standards. The cooperative has also benefited from Eataly’s knowledge sharing on best practices for packaging and marketing and their 4,000 jars of jam are now ready to travel to Rome, where they will soon reach the shelves.

Read the full article: FAO

Empowering young agripreneurs

Photo credit: Google

Young people should be supported to develop agricultural enterprises and view agriculture as a viable career option (SPC)

Youth in Agriculture provides biggest potential for mass job creation in Africa


The creation of business opportunities for unemployed youth in the agricultural sector is at the center stage of an African wide initiative led by the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture.

More than 60 youth participants from six countries across Africa are attending the business training “Empowering Agripreneurs on Agripreneural and Business Management” taking place 3-6 February at the headquarters of the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria.

Dr Nteranya Sanginga, the Director General of IITA, had started the IITA Youth Agripreneurs—a landmark program that provides youth from diverse disciplines training and opportunities to engage in agricultural business or entrepreneurship. During the opening program, he invited participants to proactively seek synergies for answering needs in the development of youth and agriculture. “The African Development Bank has declared a big interest in partnership engagement for youth and agriculture, the reason why I call upon you for your ideas and support”, he said. He emphasized that he does not see a development in Africa without unemployed youth engaging in agriculture.

Sanginga further explained that inclusive growth of the continent could be achieved through the joint implementation of mechanisms in agribusiness which would work for both farmers and consumers. “A young ‘agripreneur’ coming from a communication background is working with fish now. First, you might think communication and fish―where is the link?… but when you start understanding how sales figures of fish products can increase throughout value chains by involving young people coming from different sectors, such as communication or marketing, it might become an eye-opener for you in engaging in new partnership opportunities.”

Read the full article: IITA


Over 535,000 Trees Planted at 174 Sites Throughout Armenia (ARMENIA TREE PROJECT)

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November 20, 2007

Armenia Tree Project Exceeds 2007 Pledge to United Nations Billion Tree Campaign

— Over 535,000 Trees Planted at 174 Sites Throughout Armenia

For Armenia Tree Project (ATP), this will be a year of significant achievements in community tree planting, large-scale reforestation, nursery expansion, and community development programs. In 2007, ATP planted over 535,000 trees at 174 sites throughout Armenia, fulfilling its pledge to the worldwide campaign launched by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). As part of the “Plant for the Planet: Billion Tree Campaign,” ATP pledged to plant at least 500,000 trees in 2007, as part of Armenia’s contribution to the UNEP goal to plant at least one billion trees worldwide during 2007. Continue reading “Over 535,000 Trees Planted at 174 Sites Throughout Armenia (ARMENIA TREE PROJECT)”

Poverty and hunger, particularly of children (Google Alert / Rock for Hunger)

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Google Alert for Poverty

Rock For Hunger

The community standing together as one to help make the world a better place both locally and globally, with music and in peace.

Hunger and World Poverty

The following is a short overview from about the viscious cycle of poverty in the world. Over 25,000 people die each year, when there is enough food! Enough Shelter! Enough Opportunity! And enough help! Every child deserves the opportunity to live a happy life full of happiness. NO child should suffer from hunger, and have to worry about surviving each day. Poverty is a problem that we can end by working together. This generation will forever what they did or did not do against the growing problem of poverty. How do you want to be remembered? Continue reading “Poverty and hunger, particularly of children (Google Alert / Rock for Hunger)”

500 million youths in poverty (Google Alert / Maltastar)

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Google Alert for Poverty


In brief

500 million youths in poverty


The Labour Youth Forum expressed its concern over the millions of youth who are suffering poverty around the world. On Sunday the world commemorates World Youth Day.


“We urge international leader to keep their promises and prioritize the fight against poverty. It is estimated that 200 million youths around the world live on less than 1 US dollar a day, while over 500 million youths live on less than 2 US dollars a day,” said the Labour Youths.  The LYF said that all labour policies around the world should aim at creating jobs, better quality jobs. They urged the government to promote the fight against poverty and push forward the agenda when discussing international fora. The Labour Youths will be pushing forward the issue during the Socialist Youths International Congress to be held in the next few days.




In order to fight poverty and hunger after World War II, my country Belgium (and certainly many more countries) offered small spaces to poor people, where they could create their own little garden.  These were called  “The People’s Gardens” and it was a huge success, alleviating both hunger and poverty.


We all know how difficult it is nowadays to create quality jobs for youngsters in these modern times.  Therefore, it seems almost impossible to even hope that “all labour policies around the world should aim at creating jobs, better quality jobs“.


Why not setting up a worldwide program of creating “The Youngsters’ Gardens“, offering a small space and some simple tools and seeds to every jobless young girl or boy, where to can start to grow vegetables and other cash crops?  I am thinking particularly at all these poor youngsters in the drylands of the developing countries, sometimes exposed to hunger and even famine.


Let us apply the strategy of Prof. YUNUS, the Nobel Prize winner, and give  them a small garden as a loan, not in cash, but in real space, equipment and seeds.  It would be a sort of Grameen Bank for gardens, not for shops or jobs.  For sure, it would take care of the problem of food security and annual income per head.


Too nice an idea for World Youth Day ?  Just give it a try and see !  The poor youngsters would live it !


Malaysia fostering relations with poor but resource-rich African countries (Google Alert / Khaleej Times)

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Google Alert for Poverty

Khaleej Times

Mugabe in Malaysia to fight poverty in Africa

5 August 2007

KUALA LUMPUR – Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe and other African and Southeast Asian leaders are meeting in Malaysia this week to draw up a plan to fight poverty and bolster economic ties. Mugabe’s presence at the gathering on the island resort of Langkawi is already causing some controversy. But Malaysia’s foreign minister said the meeting, which will be hosted by Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, was non-political. “I have heard that there have been some rumblings, but we must remember that the Langkawi dialogue is to discuss development,” Foreign Minister Malaysia Syed Hamid Albar told the New Straits Times. “It’s a non-political forum. We will not be discussing politics but socio-economic development. “Whichever country is in need of development and can learn from the experience of others, they should be encouraged to participate,” he said. Continue reading “Malaysia fostering relations with poor but resource-rich African countries (Google Alert / Khaleej Times)”

Wheat yield and food security in Pakistan (dgAlert / DAWN)

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dgFood Security

DAWN the internet 

Wheat yield and food security

By Bilal Hassan

Average wheat yield in Pakistan has been stagnant for the last seven years while the population has increased significantly, widening the gap between demand and supply of basic staple food. In Punjab, wheat occupies the largest cultivated area during Rabi season. Its share in national wheat production is greater than any of the three other provinces. But wheat statistics reveals no increase in yield for the last seven years. Continue reading “Wheat yield and food security in Pakistan (dgAlert / DAWN)”

Mobility grants “European Sustainable Water Goals” – (IISD / Ecologic)

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Water Issues Announcement List <>

Call for application:

Mobility grants “European Sustainable Water Goals”,

Belluno, Italy, 8-12 October 2007

European Sustainable Water Goals 2007–2010

For details see:

We seek qualified PhD, Master Students, post-Docs and professionals who would like to study in the fields of Environmental Sciences and get a Mobility Grant to participate to the conference “Managing Water Resources in European Mountain Environments” which will be held Belluno (Italy), 8-12 October 2007.
For more information please see ESWG training section <; of our website. Continue reading “Mobility grants “European Sustainable Water Goals” – (IISD / Ecologic)”

Researcher for Freshwater Project (IISD / IGES)

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Water Issues Announcement List <>

Recruitment Announcement: Researcher for Freshwater Project (FW) at IGES

The Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES) is recruiting a researcher for its Freshwater Project (FW), which conducts research under the theme “Enhancing Access to Safe Water through Innovative Water Quality Management,” with the aim of proposing innovative policies on water quality management in terms of increasing the usability of water resources and improving access to safe water. For more information, please refer to the recruitment announcement in the URL below: Continue reading “Researcher for Freshwater Project (IISD / IGES)”

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