Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) - UPSC Notes

The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations that leads international efforts to defeat hunger. This article talks about FAO and its importance for the IAS Exam.

International organizations and groupings are an important part of the International Relations section of the General Studies paper-2 in the UPSC Syllabus. International relations is a very dynamic part and is crucial for multiple papers in Prelims and Mains. Students preparing for UPSC 2020 and other Government Exams must be aware of this topic. 

Visiting the Current Affairs page will help candidates immensely in cracking the IAS Exam.

Strengthen your preparation for the upcoming exam by checking the following links:

Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO)

The FAO is a specialized agency of the United Nations.

  • Established in 1945, the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) has its headquarters in Rome, Italy. 
  • It was founded with a goal to provide food security for everyone and assure that people will have access to high-quality food in sufficient quantities to achieve a healthy lifestyle.
  • Every year, the FAO publishes a number of major ‘State of the World’ reports related to food, agriculture, forestry, fisheries and natural resources.

UPSC Prelims Facts for FAO

FAO Members

The FAO has 197 member countries, which includes the European Union as well. It conducts biennial conferences. The FAO Council is the executive arm of the governing body. The members elect the Council which is composed of 49 members.

FAO Council

The FAO Council was established in 1947 at the FAO Conference that replaced the original “Executive Committee of FAO”. This was in accordance with the recommendation of the Preparatory Commission of FAO on World Food Proposals.

Note: The Council, within the limits of the powers, acts as the Conference’s executive organ between sessions.

Role and Functions of Food & Agriculture Organisation (FAO)

Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) is a global organisation and its functions can be listed as follows:

  • Helping Governments and Development Agencies coordinate their activities which are targeted to develop and improve agriculture, fisheries, forestry and other water and land resources. 
  • Conducting research and providing technical assistance to various projects related to improving agricultural output and development.
  • Conducting training and educational programs and also collecting and analyzing agricultural data to improve yield and production.
  • The FAO also brings out a number of publications/reports, some of which are, the State of the World, the Global Report on Food Crises, the State of Food and Agriculture, the State of the World’s Forests, etc. Check out other reports published by international organisations here.

Other functions include dealing with matters related to Food and Agriculture around the world. It also executes current and prospective activities of the Organisation including its Programme of Work and Budget, administrative matters and financial management of the Organisation and constitutional matters.

To know more about Important Headquarters of International Organizations, check the linked article.

FAO and India

The Food and Agricultural Organisation of the United Nations has enjoyed a valuable partnership with India since it began operations in 1945. It continues to play a major role in India’s progress in the areas of crops, livestock, fisheries, food security, and the management of natural resources. FAO began its operations in India in 1948. It has an office in New Delhi. The nodal ministry for FAO in India is the Ministry of Agriculture.

  • The main objective of the Indian Government is to double the income of farmers by increasing efficiency and ensuring equity in a sustainable manner.
  • The NITI Aayog is the country’s premier policy-making institution that is expected to bolster the economic growth of the country. Its various policies and agendas represent the encircling framework for the Agricultural Sector.

Priority Areas

Sustainable and improved agricultural productivity and increased farm incomes Stronger food and nutrition security systems
Effective natural resource management, community development and assistance in transboundary cooperation to the global public good Enhanced social inclusion, improved skills and employment opportunity in the agriculture sector

The FAO Council also approved India’s membership to the Executive Board of the United Nations World Food Program (WFP) for 2020 and 2021.

FAO UPSC Notes:- Download PDF Here

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