To kick off the discussion, Virginie Leroy said that safe
agricultural practices will ensure sufficient harvest from
small-scale farmers, who actually feed the population.
Destruction of forests and soil degradation, Leroy says, is
hurting agricultural production.
Agnes Kirabo said that the agriculture sector has the
ability to fill every individual’s purse and bank accounts, but
cautioned that agriculture for food should not be ignored.
“The agricultural sector has the potential because it has
market. It has billions of mouths in the world to feed. It has
the potential to end poverty and transform economies.”
Humphrey Mutasa said that for people to benefit from
agriculture twice (filling both the stomach and purse),
investing time in it is paramount. “The reason why our
offices are developing and filling our purses is because we
go at 8 a.m. and leave at 6 p.m. Who told you to leave
your office called agriculture at 10 a.m.? And you want your
purses to be filled?”
The panellists warned that most developing countries will
continue seeking assistance for food from the outside
world if the tendency of doing things simply for the sake of
it is done away with.