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G20 recognizes Mexico and CIMMYT for creating MasAgro

Mexico and CIMMYT were recognized by G20 agricultural development experts for presenting the Sustainable Modernization of Traditional Agriculture (MasAgro) initiative at the Meeting of Agricultural Chief Scientists (MACS) held on 26 September in Guadalajara, Jalisco, in the framework of the activities organized by the Mexican presidency of G20, which includes the largest economies in the world.

During the meeting “Strengthening international cooperation through agricultural research and development,” Karen García, Chief Executive of MasAgro at CIMMYT, expressed her gratitude for the distinction granted to MasAgro, which was included in a report delivered to the G20 Agricultural Vice- Ministers and described as a model of research and capacity building that promotes public-private partnerships in the food and farming sector.

Bram Govaerts, Associate Director of CIMMYT’s Conservation Agriculture Program and leader of the MasAgro component “Take It to the Farmer”, called upon the international community to commit to promoting collaborative research strategies that strengthen global food security. As an example, Govaerts cited the Global Programs WHEAT and MAIZE that CGIAR centers are collaboratively implementing to increase the productivity of small-scale farmers in different regions of Africa, Asia, and Latin America.

Marty Jones, representative of the Global Forum of Agricultural Research (GFAR), urged the participants to establish a mechanism to facilitate setting agricultural research and development priorities and create sustainable production systems with the capacity to bring about a 60 % increase in global food and agricultural productivity by 2050.

The participants also expressed their support of researchers who are developing the Germplasm Resource Information Network (GRIN–GLOBAL) and working to make genetic resources more accessible to the international scientific community. Simon Liu, representative of the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), invited experts to cooperate in establishing policies giving open source access to genetic and genomic data obtained with public sector program support to benefit mainly farmers in developing countries.