Brazil–Africa dialogue contributes to fighting hunger

Representatives of Niger, Ethiopia, Senegal and Mozambique visit a small scale food processing factory in Brazil, which purchases locally from smallholder farmers through the national food purchasing programme (PAA). Photo credits: Ubirajara Machado/MDS.

Brazil's impressive positive impacts on poverty, inequality and food insecurity offer significant lessons for Africa's complex development reality. African countries have also been active in looking for successful examples of boosting agricultural productivity.

Brasilia and Arapiraca –In this context, another multi-country study visit was organized by WFP Centre of Excellence with the objective of fostering South-South learning on food and nutrition security policy options. African nations’ representatives were invited to participate in the PAA Africa Programme launching activities between 2 and 6 July in Brazil. Officially nicknamed Purchase from Africans for Africa, PAA Africa Programme is a cooperation initiative started in 2012 in 10 African countries which draws on the expertise accumulated by Brazil in its own food purchasing programme (PAA).

The programme is organised into two strategies. The first covers Brazilian humanitarian cooperation and will be implemented by the General Coordination for International Action Against Hunger (CGFOME) and Ministry of Social Development and Fight against Hunger (MDS) through an agreement with FAO and WFP, with support from DFID. The programme extends financing for food purchases to Ethiopia, Niger, Malawi, Mozambique and Senegal aiming to benefit small farmers and vulnerable populations. The second strategy covers Brazilian technical cooperation and will be implemented by the Brazilian Technical Cooperation Agency (ABC), partnered with the FAO. It targets Ghana, Rwanda, Zimbabwe, Kenya and Cote d’Ivoire.

Under the South-South knowledge-sharing pillar, government of Brazil (CGFome and MDS), WFP Centre and FAO Brazil have recently organized the PAA Africa Programme Inception Workshop that took place in Brasília and Alagoas State (Northeastern region). The event brought together officials from Ethiopia, Niger, Mozambique, and Senegal governments, consultants and representatives of WFP Country Offices (including P4P), FAO COs discuss potential ways forward for the implementation of the Programme.

The first phase of the Workshop took place in Brasilia (2-3 July). Besides presenting the Brazilian experiences, the roundtable discussions attempted to explore the African views, expectations, challenges and initiatives in promoting the Human Right to Adequate Food. Country cases on existing local food purchase initiatives were presented, followed by working group sessions in order to promote debate between stakeholders involved in country initiatives and international consultants, during which they discussed the opportunities to implement the PAA Africa pilot projects and to support scale-up strategies. All presentations available here.

In the second phase, a three-day field trip (4-6 July), with support of Arapiraca’s Municipality, gave the participants the opportunity to better understand the execution of food security-related programs in Brazil, such as PAA and the National School Feeding Programme (PNAE). Meetings with smallholder farmers and school meals beneficiaries enabled the delegations to gain on-the-ground knowledge on how food supply chains can be strengthened, from production to delivery. “Experiences in school feeding programsthat purchase foodfrom localsources could enrich the debates between Brazil and African governments on promoting the right to food”, analyses Daniel Balaban, Director of WFP Centre. For more information please visit our online photo gallery.

The workshop served as a platform to integrate stakeholders at national and regional level. In the following months, the international consultants assigned to the five African countries are expected to present a workplan outlining proposed actions and activities for PAA local projects.

Learn more

The PAA proves to be a very practical instrument for building the capacity of farmers to produce goods of quality with the scope to access other market opportunities over time. Learn more about PAA Africa Multidimensional Approach to Food Security - article prepared by WFP Centre Darana Souza and FAO Brazil Israel Klug -featured in the recent UNDP International Policy Centre for Inclusive Growth's publication: The Role of South-South Cooperation in Inclusive and Sustainable Agricultural Development.

About the WFP Centre of Excellence against Hunger

The World Food Programme and the government of Brazil launched in partnership the WFP Centre of Excellence against Hunger to promote sustainable national social safety nets based on the successes and lessons learnt from the Brazilian experience. The WFP Centre of Excellence is a bridge for south-south cooperation in capacity development in the areas of school feeding, nutrition and food security. It brings southern nations together who want to learn and develop their own programmes.

Since its official launch in November 2011, the Centre has organized a total of 8 study visits from 8 countries (Mali, East Timor, Haiti, Guinea Bissau, Malawi, Rwanda, Niger, and Guinea Conarky). Learn more about it at: http://www.wfp.org/centre-of-excellence-hunger/news