13 Highlights from Farming First’s 2013 Activity

2013 has proved to be another action packed year for Farming First, as we further our goal of getting sustainable agriculture to the top of the global agenda. As we near the end of the year, ‘Farming First co-chairs Morgane Danielou and Robert Hunter take a look back and count down the top 13 moments of 2013.

#13 Farming First and The Economist teamed up for Feeding the World Summit

For the second successful year, Farming First partnered with The Economist at its “Feeding the World” conference, which was held in Amsterdam in January, 2013.

The Economist Feeding the World

The Economist Feeding the World

The summit debated issues regarding ‘smart partnerships’, building successful collaborations, empowering smallholders, the role of science and technology and tackling food waste. Nutrition emerged as a key area that must be addressed and that is swiftly moving up the food security agenda.

Farming First live tweeted the event and filmed a series of exclusive interviews with delegates, which can be seen on Farming First TV.

#12 Farming First TV reached nearly 130,000 views

Farming First’s YouTube Channel is home to 168 videos, from short animated films to interviews with experts on sustainable agriculture and food and nutrition security. Highlights this year have included Farming First’s award-winning animation “The Story of Agriculture and the Green Economy” reaching 40,000 views.


“The Story of Agriculture and the Green Economy” is also available in Spanish, Portuguese, French and Mandarin.

#11 Farming First welcomed four new supporters 

Farming First is a unique coalition that welcomes members from all along the agricultural value chain – from smallholder farmers, to scientists, engineers, NGOs and large industries. 2013 has seen four new supporters join our cause: two international non-profits dedicated to ending poverty through agriculture; IDE and One Acre Fund, consultancy Africa Practice and public-private partnership facilitator Prorustica.

If your organisation is interested in becoming a Farming First supporter, please contact info@farmingfirst.org 

#10 Farming First launched LinkedIn discussion group

172 professionals in the field of sustainable agriculture and food security are now active members of the Farming First discussion group on LinkedIn. Recent discussions have been sparked by brand new guest blogs on the Farming First website from leading experts in the field, such as Rachel Kyte at the World Bank and Achim Dobermann of the International Rice Research Institute. Topics have included how to attract youth to agriculture, the role of agribusiness and what comes next for climate-smart agriculture. Not yet a member? You can join the Farming First group here.

Farming First LinkedIn

#9 Farming First and FAO infographic “The Female Face of Farming” led debate once again on International Women’s Day 

On March 8th, a broad range of organisations chose Farming First’s infographic ‘The Female Face of Farming” to illustrate the need for women to be empowered in their roles as farmers, to have the support, the rights and access to inputs they require to feed their families and the world.

Female Face of Farming Tweet

Female Face of Farming tweet

Female Face of Farming

#8 Farming First reached over 20,000 followers on Twitter 

From live tweeting events to breaking news, to sharing exclusive interviews and guest blog posts, the Farming First Twitter account has continued to grow and now has over 23,000 loyal followers. Thank you for all the follows, mentions, retweets and interactions!

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 #7 Farming First co-hosted a farmer roundtable at the World Food Prize

On 16th October, Farming First co-hosted a farmer roundtable event at the World Food Prize in Des Moines, Iowa. The event featured five farmers from around the world (Africa, Europe, South Asia and South America), who shared their thoughts on the on-farm impact of climate change and discussed how new agricultural technologies and farm management practices were helping to improve the resilience and reliability of their farms in the future.

Read their opinions and watch a video from the day here. 

#6 Farming First launched new website

Farming First’s website has become a hub of information on that proves the agriculture’s vast contribution to global issues, and helps people to communicate these issues effectively. This year it was reorganised under five key issues: sustainable agriculture, gender, food & nutrition security, water and climate change. This has made it even easier for those interested in these topics to access a wealth of information, from infographics, to animated videos, factsheets and policy papers. Over 100 case studies are also available on the website, as well as an active blog and events calendar. To receive all Farming First news and materials – why not sign up to the monthly newsletter? 

#5 Farming First presented at social media workshop at the Global Landscape Forum

Farming First was invited to give a presentation at the Global Landscape Forum’s Social Media Boot camp, which was held in the opening days of COP19. The presentation demonstrated to attendees how to make engaging content, using its “Guide to the UNFCCC Negotiations on Agriculture” as an example of best practice. The guide follows the crucial steps of having key messages, backed up with evidence, supported by third party endorsements to create a call to action.

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#4 Farming First showed strong support for agriculture  at COP19

Farming First’s “Guide to the UNFCCC Negotiations on Agriculture” proved to be an invaluable tool for helping delegates communicate agriculture’s potential role to mitigate climate change to  negotiators, as explained in this article in Outreach magazine:

Farming First was also a vocal supporter of the World Farmers’ Organisation’s disappointment at the lack of progress for agriculture at COP19, which was voiced through two articles:

Read: “Why aren’t UN negotiators listening to 1.4 billion farmers?” by Robert Carlson on Reuters Alertnet

Read “Why Have Farmers Yet Again Been Forgotten at the UN Climate Talks?” by Anette Friis on the Huffington Post

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#3 Farming First put nutrition initiatives on the map

The importance of nutrition initiatives to solve “hidden hunger” has crept up the agenda recently – with institutions and governments recognising it is not simply a greater amount of food that must be made available to the world’s poorest people, but a great amount of healthy food, that will give them the nutrients they need to grow strong and productive, and ward off disease.

To mirror this paradigm shift, Farming First has added nutrition initiatives to its “Global Food Security Initiatives Map” to showcase the organisations and partnerships making a difference in this field all over the world. Explore the interactive map and learn more here.

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#2 FarmingFirst.org received nearly 50,000 visitors

Following a redesign, the launch of guest blogs from prominent figures in sustainable agriculture and food security, as well as the launch of a brand new infographic, farmingfirst.org has enjoyed a very active year – with almost 50,000 people visiting the website and viewing over 116,000 pages of content!

#1 The Future of Food and Farming Infographic: Putting agriculture on the post-2015 agenda 

The Post-2015 agenda is responsible for forming Sustainable Development Goals, (SDGs) that will replace the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Farming First held a high level luncheon alongside the first Open Working Group at the United Nations in New York, to discuss ways in which agriculture can be included in these new SDGs.

In addition, Farming First produced an interactive infographic, that turned the whole post-2015 agenda on its head, and instead looked ahead to when the SDGs are likely to end, to see what the future could look like if agriculture is not addressed in the SDGs. The infographic, entitled “Food and Farming in 2030” explores how food, people and the planet will be affected.

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The infographic received over 1,000 views on launch day – the second highest hit rate for FarmingFirst.org of all time! The graphics were also retweeted over 1,000 times. This piece by Farming First Co-Chair Morgane Danielou on Reuters Alertnet, sums up the issue: For sustainable growth, count on agriculture. 

Thank you to everyone who has supported Farming First’s activity this year!