The State of Food and Agriculture (SOFA) is FAO’s main annual flagship publication. Each year it has a thematic focus on a major topic of importance for agricultural, rural development and food security. The topic of the 2014 edition of the SOFA is “Agricultural innovation in family farming for sustainable rural development”. Over the coming decades world agriculture must feed a growing world population - expected to reach 9 billion people in 2050 - contribute to eradicate hunger while preserving the natural resource base for agriculture. One key challenge is for farmers to apply technologies and practices that increase and improve the provision of goods and services in agriculture in a sustainable manner. Crucial for meeting this challenge is a dynamic process of agricultural innovation. Family farms are central to meeting this challenge. They produce most of the food consumed in developing countries, but often their level of productivity is low and their access to market, information, knowledge, technologies and practices limited. Involving family farms in innovation processes is key. Effective and inclusive rural advisory services play a central role on achieving this.

The focus of the SOFA 2014 is on promoting innovation and innovation capacity in and for family farms, with a view to achieving sustainable rural development and productivity increases. It is aimed at a broad audience of policy makers, and not necessarily specialists in the fields of innovation and rural advisory services. The draft of the report is planned to be finalized towards the end of 2013 and published in 2014, the International Year of Family Farming.


The purpose of the side event is to share and discuss some of the contents, analysis and tentative messages of the SOFA 2014 report with stakeholders and experts in rural advisory services. This will provide participants an opportunity to provide comments, suggestions and inputs to the FAO’s flag ship publication and help sharpening its key messages aimed at policy makers.

Main organizer: Food Agriculture Organization of the United Nations

Date and time: Sept 23, 2013 from 16:00 – 19:00

Venue: Park Inn hotel, Room Döblin 1


Delgermaa Chuluunbaatar, Agriculture Extension Officer
Agricultural Research and Extension Unit, FAO
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


The International Year of Family Farming

The State of Food and Agriculture