Speech/statement | Date: 06/07/2023 | Ministry of Agriculture and Food
Review of the State of Food and Agriculture Intervention by Norway.
Excellencies, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen,
It is with great honour I address the 43rd FAO Conference. This is a time of rising food insecurity. Food systems are greatly affected by climate change, conflicts, loss of biodiversity, pollution and diseases. The poor and vulnerable suffer the most.
Russia`s war of aggression against Ukraine has caused a humanitarian crisis and worsened the global food crisis. Norway strongly condemns Russia’s unprovoked and unjustified war of aggression against Ukraine.
The complex challenges means that FAO is needed more than ever, to be fit for purpose and working closely with the wider UN system.
We call on FAO to build on its comparative advantages as a normative knowledge organisation with a mandate to ensure food security, nutrition and sustainable management of natural resources within agriculture, forestry, fisheries and aquaculture.
Norway welcomes the report on integrated water resource management.
We urge FAO to take a rights- based approach to water management, and to promote sustainable landscape approaches.
Scarcity of natural resources means that all countries must make use of its available resources for food production. In Norway, only 3 % of the land is arable land, and therefore a scarce resource we need to protect.
Family farming is key to ensure sustainable solutions for agriculture, and I have put women and youth among my main priorities for the coming years.
In Northern Norway where I come from, my family runs a small farm. Even though winters are long and the growing season is short, for us it is important to have food production in the whole country. This is food security in practice.
We encourage FAO to scale up sustainable practices supporting family farming, in particular agro -ecology approaches.
Norway wish to underline the need for an ambitous follow up of FAOs climate strategy. Agriculture relies on biodiversity and is key to halting and reversing biodiversity loss. FAOs role in supporting the implementation of the Convention of Biological Diversity will be even more important in the future.
Seed diversity is fundamental to global food security. This year marks the 15th anniversary of the Svalbard Global Seed Vault. The Seed Vault now houses more than 1,2 million seed samples from gene banks from all around the world.
We need to realize the ocean's potential and make sure that fisheries and aquaculture is a central part of food security.
Norway will also stress FAOs vital role in providing global statistics and information on forest resources as well as capacity building for sustainable forest management.
As a final point, Norway will stress the need to combat AMR. This requires global action with a "One Health" approach. We call on FAO to contribute actively to the One Health partnership.
The goal must be prudent and responsible use of antibiotics in order to minimize the threat of AMR. Good animal health and biosecurity is fundamental. We must end all use of antibiotics as growth promoters in animal food production.
Finally chair, let me affirm Norway's commitment to FAOs work. We look forward to continuing our work with FAO and its member states.