Keynote: Mexico’s Government: Developing the Roadmap for Agricultural Resilience

Mexico’s Agriculture Ministry SAGARPA (The Secretariat of Agriculture, Livestock, Rural Development, Fisheries and Food) is focused on creating an environment in which farmers thrive and which is attractive for the next generation of farmers.  The biggest challenges the country faces include poverty, climate change, soil degradation, gender equity and inclusion of smallholder producers (youth, women and indigenous communities).  SAGARPA set out to solve these problems by taking a big picture view, partnering with civil society and the private sector, aligning with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and rolling out a national development plan that reaches to 2030 and beyond.   Speaking about the broad approach they have taken, Ing. Santiago Arguello, General Director of Agriculture Promotion, shared several strategies taken to implement lasting programs to see real long-term change:

  • Take a regional focus rather than a municipal one to facilitate scaling
  • Focus on strategic crops, both cash crops and food crops that are priorities for Mexico
  • Introduce better varietals that help farmers to be more resilient in the face of climate change and other shocks
  • Promote technology to increase production
  • Foster public/private partnerships that can be sustained past the end of this administration
  • Find and develop markets for Mexican products
  • Fortify value chains with focused public funding
  • Preserve natural resources

Through these strategies the team at SAGARPA aims to build a productive and profitable agricultural sector that guarantees food security while ensuring the highest environment and economic value possible.

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