11th Multi-Stakeholder Partnership Meeting

Day 5: New livestock opportunities: building forward

11-06-2021. The fourth day of the 11th Multi-Stakeholder Partnership conference of the Global Agenda for Sustainable Livestock (GASL)—‘Embracing change and harnessing diversity: The roles of livestock in sustainable food systems’began with a welcome from Alwin Kopse, of the Swiss Federal Office of Agriculture (FOAG), who introduced the panel discussion on food systems transformation. Collaboration and synergies within and outside GASL were the basis for the discussion.

The first speaker was Badi Besbes, of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and secretary of the new Sub-Committee on Livestock (SCL) of FAO’s Committee on Agriculture (COAG). Besbes said that this new livestock sub-committee provides an important forum for consultation and discussion and advises the COAG on policy and burning livestock issues. The SCL is currently working on a provisional agenda that includes sustainable livestock for food and nutritional security and poverty reduction, animal health, and other matters. Besbes stressed the many ways that GASL and SCL could collaborate in future, including by GASL members contributing or providing feedback to SCL’s agenda, providing information and documenting GASL’s work, and advancing some technical livestock topics.

The second presentation, given by Ambassador Thanawat Tiensin, chair of the Committee on World Food Security (CFS), stressed the need for collaboration and synergies to bring about better health and life through livestock. He cited livestock’s key role in providing essential proteins and in improving livelihoods for the world’s rural populations and smallholders. He acknowledged livestock’s negative s well as positive impacts on the environment and global health.Tiensin pointed out that transformation will be essential for the livestock sector. He said the CFS is calling for diversified and integrated food production systems and that GASL will play an important role in generating discussions and promoting CFS activities and policy solutions.

These presentations were followed by a panel discussion that featured the two presenters Nitya Ghotge, Veterinarian and Co-founding Director of the Indian NGO Anthra, Jimmy Smith, Director General of the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), and Alexandra de Athayde, Executive Director of theInternational Feed Industry Federation (IFIF). The speakers were asked about the various rolls of GASL, SCL, and CFS. The panelists agreed that collaboration will be key to foster changes in the livestock sector and to generate better food systems for everybody. They said that collaboration among GASL, SCL, and CFS will be an opportunity to share knowledge, to work together to help refine science-based policies, and to support each other’s agenda.

The remainder of the day offered dialogues in different topic areas, with the meeting’s attendees providing their expertise. Parallel sessions included reflections on GASL planning, actions and priorities, GASL outcomes to achieve by 2030, and GASL outputs, and challenges. Among other topics, the Day 4 sessions featured discussions on livestock contribution to sustainable development; livestock mitigation of, and adaptation to, climate change; consumers of livestock-derived foods; relationships between animals and humans; and the role of communications in the livestock sector.

Watch the recordings here