[INTERVIEW] Mbuli Charles Boliko, Director of the Liaison Office in Japan for the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations talks about FAO and agriculture for the future
Agriculture provides us with our food, and without food there can be no life. We need to invest in sustainable agricultural strategies which allow us to feed ourselves without compromising the capacity and ability of the future generation to also do the same.
- Category: #interview #Agriculture & Food
- Interview date: Sep 27th, 2018
- Writer: David
Question: Could you tell us about FAO’s mission to achieve zero hunger and your activities in Japan?
Mr. Charles Boliko:
FAO is a specialized agency under the United Nations which focuses on issues related to food and agriculture. Its main objective is to lead the global cause of achieving zero hunger by ensuring that every human being on earth has access to sufficient food, in terms of both quantity andquality.
The FAO mandates are
- to increase the production of nutritious food for all people by introducing agricultural techniques and contributing to rural development,
- to ensure resilience,
- to reduce dependence on food aid by educating people on how they can produce their own food, and
- to utilize and manage human resources on a sustainable level.
The main activities of FAO are
- research and knowledge accumulation (data analysis, generation of knowledge, and data-based publications);
- policy development and assistance;
- service as a forum for neutral discussion that contributes to world peace; and
- implementation of concrete projects in the field
To achieve its missions, FAO has worked with several stakeholders in mobilizing and promoting its activities to achieve zero hunger, including Japan, which currently stands as the second largest contributor to FAO’s regular budget.
Question: How can FAO’s partnership with Pasona Group and Awaji Youth Federation (AYF) contribute to the objectives of both organizations?
Mr. Charles Boliko:
In this era of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the United Nations and FAO both continue to work with several organizations including private companies to achieve SDG No. 17, which is to Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development.In the case of Pasona Group, FAO has agreed to work together in achieving greater public awareness regarding food security, and Pasona possesses a wonderful set of networks which is capable of tackling this issue. As Pasona is a renowned recruitment and human resources company, we are now striving to work on capacity development and the dissemination of knowledge. The Fellows in Awaji Youth Federation are extremely creative, open-minded, and belong to the type of young individuals that FAO needs. Apart from utilizing individual skills and building relationships, one of our ongoing projects is the creation of a new FAO establishment which will be done in partnership with Pasona Group at Awaji Island’s Yumebutai International Conference Center.
Question: Why is sustainable agriculture so important for the future?
Mr. Charles Boliko:
Agriculture provides us with our food, and without food there can be no life. We need to invest in sustainable agricultural strategies which allow us to feed ourselves without compromising the capacity and ability of the future generation to also do the same. It is imperative that we do not think only for our own selves, ignoring the consequence of our actions and its impact on future generations. Furthermore, there can be no sustainability until we consider the fulfillment of “5P”: People, Planet, Prosperity, Partnership, and Peace. All of these cannot be achieved without the efforts of people. As the world population continues to rise between now and 2050, we are called upon to increase food production by some 50% in order to meet the new demand. This should be executed in a way which is sustainable without exhausting the quality of our water and land, and in such a way that we are not contributing further to pollution and other environmental issues.