Flagship projects

FIRST (Food and Nutrition Security Impact, Resilience, Sustainability and Transformation) and INFORMED (Information for Nutrition Food Security and Resilience for Decision Making) projects



In July 2015, the EU and FAO launched a partnership agreement to boost food and nutrition security, sustainable agriculture and resilience. Two 5-year programmes are forecasted:

  1. FIRST (Food and Nutrition Security Impact, Resilience, Sustainability and Transformation) aims at enhancing the capacities of governments and regional administrations to improve food security, nutrition and sustainable agriculture policies and better implement them, by providing policy assistance and capacity development support. This programme will be implemented in the following countries: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Chad, Cote d'Ivoire, Cuba, Djibouti, Fiji, Guatemala, Haiti, Kenya, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mozambique, Myanmar, the Niger, Pakistan, Rwanda, Solomon Islands, Sri Lanka, Swaziland, Uganda, the United Republic of Tanzania, Vanuatu, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
  1. INFORMED (Information for Nutrition Food Security and Resilience for Decision Making) will contribute to strengthening resilience to withstand food crises as a result of human-induced and natural disasters, by providing regular, timely and evidence-based information to decision-makers. This programme will be implemented in the following countries: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Central African Republic, Djibouti, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, the Gambia, Haiti, Kenya, Mauritania, Myanmar, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Tajikistan, the Sudan, Swaziland and Zimbabwe.

The initiative, country-led and demand-driven, will receive €50 million and €23.5 million from the EU and FAO respectively.

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The Improved Global Governance for Hunger Reduction Programme (2012-2016)

This program is an example of the collaboration of the EU with the three Rome UN Agencies. The Improved Global Governance for Hunger Reduction Programme seeks to concretely improve the way in which the global community works together to eradicate hunger and malnutrition. The programme focuses on the Horn of Africa and the Sahel, but with activities in other regions as well. It is funded by FAO and the EU – with respective contributions of €17 million and €30 million – and is being implemented by FAO in collaboration with IFAD and WFP.

More specifically, the programme has four goals:

  1. helping to ensure more coordinated food security and nutrition governance at all levels, for instance by supporting activities of the Committee on World Food Security (CFS) and the SUN Movement
  2. increasing the availability of high quality information for evidence-based policy-making
  3. supporting the development and implementation of coherent policies and programmes
  4. developing capacity at all levels.

The EU plays an important role in the programme, both financially and technically, and reiterated its focus on raising awareness on the importance of resilience and on the link between nutrition and food security and agriculture. The programme also contributes to three of FAO's Strategic Objectives, namely SO1 (help eliminate hunger, food insecurity and malnutrition), SO3 (reduce rural poverty) and SO5 (increase the resilience of livelihoods to disasters).

A Mid-Term Evaluation (2013) recognised the added value of the programme in enabling innovative developments and technical leadership, acting as a catalyst for change and in building strategic and effective partnerships.

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Support to Land Governance in Sub-Saharan Africa Project


This project was designed as a way of implementing the Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure (VGGTs), which aims at promoting secure tenure rights and equitable access to land as a means for eradicating hunger and poverty. The VGGTs were endorsed in 2012 by the CFS and are the first globally negotiated document outlining the way to address tenure and access rights to land, fisheries and forests.

In this context, FAO works with the EU in Kenya and Somalia and provides transversal support to Burundi, Côte d'Ivoire, Niger, Ethiopia, South Sudan, Angola, Malawi and Swaziland. EU's support has been crucial in negotiating the VGGTs, in collaborating with FAO on national capacity development projects for enacting the VGGTs at the country-level, and in developing a comprehensive VGGT e-learning curriculum and training materials.

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The EU Food Facility (2009-2012)

A high food price crisis and concurrent global economic downturn contributed to pushing millions of the world’s poor people further into poverty in 2007-2008, with a parallel effect on global food security. The EU moved rapidly to create the EU Food Facility, allocating a historic €1 billion to support those most in need. The EU channelled the funds through international organisations, NGOs and agencies of member countries, which then designed and initiated targeted short-term projects to bridge the gap between countries’ emergency needs and their development goals. FAO, which received a fourth of the funding, used assessments to target assistance to some 15 million people in Africa, Asia and Latin America. When the project cycles ended in early 2012, FAO was able to provide tangible evidence that investing in agriculture and nutrition had had an immediate impact on the countries’ acute problems, while at the same time contributing to improved resilience of vulnerable populations. This finding has long-term implications for reducing poverty and increasing global food security.

FAO projects funded by the Food Facility covered areas such as:

  • expanding certified seed production
  • ensuring access to quality inputs and appropriate extension
  • strengthening existing farmer-based organizations
  • improving storage infrastructure
  • facilitating linkages to markets
  • establishing and strengthening community-managed irrigation schemes
  • increasing livestock production
  • promoting conservation agriculture.

For more information, visit: http://www.fao.org/europeanunion/eu-projects/eu-food-facility-details/en/

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