Activities and instruments

Promoting women in rural development, agriculture and food security

A woman is inspecting corn on a field on the outskirts of Bangui, Central African Republic

Broad sections of the population in developing countries largely depend on agriculture for their livelihoods. This means that they depend on women, who are the ones who produce most of the world’s food.

Despite that fact, women often have few opportunities for shaping food production. They lack the necessary rights and financial means, and agricultural land is nearly always owned by men. Poverty among women in rural regions is particularly high and their educational opportunities are especially low.

According to estimates of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), approximately 150 million people around the world could be saved from hunger if female farmers in developing countries had the same means and opportunities for their agricultural engagement as male farmers. By promoting women, the number of undernourished children in Southern Asia could be reduced by 13.4 million and in sub-Saharan Africa by 1.7 million.

In the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development the international community set itself the goal of ending all forms of malnutrition and addressing the nutritional needs of adolescent girls, pregnant and breastfeeding women, and older persons.

For this reason German development cooperation is working hard to achieve equal rights for both women and men in rural development and food security. To that end, women’s participation in agriculture and food production is to be ensured and their active involvement in agricultural value chains is to be promoted, for example through vocational training.

Detailed information about German activities in regard to malnutrition and food security can be found here.

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