ICRW Praises Call to Invest in Women to End Hunger

Press Release Subtitle

U.S. Government Unveils Global Food Security Plan

Press Release Author

Jeannie Bunton, 202.742.1316, [email protected]

USAID Administrator Raj Shah on May 20 unveiled the U.S. government’s “Feed the Future” plan to advance global food security. Among the plan’s central themes, Dr. Shah outlined its call to “invest in women as agricultural producers and as critical actors for creating a food secure world.” Feed the Future further points out the importance of increasing women farmers’ incomes and their access to resources, and including women agricultural extensionists in modern agricultural extension systems. Additionally, the plan stresses the need to focus on crops such as sweet potatoes and legumes, which are important to women, as well as the critical role that women play in child and household nutrition.

The International Center for Research on Women (ICRW), which has conducted research on the role of women farmers in the developing world for more than 30 years, issued the following statement:

“Today the U.S. government put women farmers at the center of its efforts to end global poverty and reduce hunger. The Feed the Future plan recognizes that the majority of low-income women in the developing world rely on agriculture for food security and economic advancement. This is a welcomed and significant shift in how women’s untapped potential as economic agents of change is viewed,” said Rekha Mehra, director of economic development.

“Our success in ending global hunger depends on the administration’s ability to follow through on these commitments to women farmers,” added David Kauck, senior gender and agricultural specialist.

Mission Statement:

ICRW’s mission is to empower women, advance gender equality and fight poverty in the developing world. To accomplish this, ICRW works with partners to conduct empirical research, build capacity and advocate for evidence-based, practical ways to change policies and programs.