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Food Security - international and regional reports

Websites/Multiple Documents

Title: Improving Food Security Research and Analysis Capacity in Burma (Myanmar)
Description/subject: Project Overview...Research Reports...Policy Presentations...MDRI Background and Papers ...Data [not much there]...Links [useful set of links to individual articles and papers, web portals with onward links to information on Myanmar (Burma)and networks]
Language: English
Source/publisher: Michigan State University
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 20 June 2013

Title: Misereor's Publications on "Food security and agriculture"
Description/subject: Rural development...Sustainable agriculture...Patents on life...Water...Biodiversity...Access to markets...Ecofair trade
Language: Deutsch, German, English, French, Spanish
Source/publisher: Misereor
Format/size: html, pdf
Alternate URLs: http://www.misereor.org
Date of entry/update: 24 February 2014

Title: Publications on "Food security and agriculture"
Description/subject: Who feeds the world?...Rural development...Sustainable agriculture...Patents on life...Water...Biodiversity...Right to food...Access to markets...Ecofair trade
Language: English, German, French, Spanish, Portuguese
Source/publisher: Misereor
Format/size: html, pdf
Date of entry/update: 25 March 2014

Individual Documents

Title: UNWFP Special Report: Crop and Food Security Assessment Mission to Myanmar
Date of publication: 16 March 2016
Description/subject: This report has been prepared by Swithun Goodbody, Guljahan Kurbanova and Cristina Coslet (FAO) and Aaron Wise, Nuria Branders and Sophie Goudet (WFP) under the responsibility of the FAO and WFP Secretariats with information from official and other sources. Furthermore, the designations employed and the presentation of material in this information product do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the organizations of the United Nations concerning the legal or development status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries.
Language: English
Source/publisher: UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), World Food Programme (WFP)
Format/size: pdf (2.2MB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs22/FAO-WFP%20Crop%20and%20Food%20Security%20Assessment%20Mission%20...
Date of entry/update: 08 April 2016

Title: Myanmar Bio-Physical Characterization: Summary Findings and Issues to Explore
Date of publication: May 2013
Description/subject: This report provides a summary of key findings from research on food security and the agriculture sector in Myanmar. The focus is on material relevant for a bio-physical characterization of the country. As such, there is little emphasis on material primarily addressing socioeconomic, policy, or institutional aspects of agriculture and food security. This study is based solely on desk research, and it does not involve a field research component. The report is organized by topic, with each section including a bulleted list of significant summary points followed by a brief list of critical gaps or issues to explore during the field mission to Myanmar in November 2012.
Author/creator: Kye Baroang
Language: English
Source/publisher: Center on Globalization and Sustainable Development, Earth Institute at Columbia University
Format/size: pdf (1.8MB)
Date of entry/update: 12 April 2016

Title: Food and Nutrition Security in Myanmar
Date of publication: 05 March 2013
Description/subject: "... This background paper was commissioned by USAID as part of a Strategic Agricultural Sector and Food Security Diagnostic for Myanmar, led by Michigan State University and in partnership with the Myanmar Development Resource Institute ‐ Centre for Economic and Social Development (MDRI‐CESD). The broad objectives of the Diagnostic are to improve USAID’s understanding of the major constraints to agricultural sector performance and to food security of vulnerable households in Myanmar, and to outline core strategies USAID should consider as it designs policies and programs to stimulate broadbased agricultural growth and enhance food security. In support of these aims, this background paper synthesizes the best available data and information on poverty, nutrition, and vulnerability to food insecurity in Myanmar to identify key vulnerable populations, and outlines a set of strategic options to improve the food security of the most vulnerable households. This synthesis is based on a rapid assessment conducted during a three‐week field visit (October 28 to November 17, 2012), and pre‐ and post‐field visit desk research. The research draws from three broad types of information: 1) national surveys on poverty, malnutrition, and health outcomes; 2) food security assessments conducted by UN agencies, donors, and Non‐governmental Organizations (NGOs) in select geographic areas; 3) and semi‐structured qualitative interviews with key stakeholders across seven of the 14 states/regions in Myanmar’s Delta, Dry Zone, and hilly regions that the team accessed during the field visit. Data availability and reliability are major constraints to proper assessment in Myanmar. The Government of Myanmar (GOM) has not conducted a population census since 1983 and this inaction casts doubt on all other survey work since. The world’s longest running civil war and military‐government policies have restricted surveyors’ access to many parts of the country; even the two relatively reliable surveys intended to document poverty and nutrition conditions face these limitations. Very few surveys provide sex‐disaggregated data, which limits analysis of gender aspects of poverty and vulnerability. The authors fully recognize this obstacle and yet are in agreement with one long‐time observer of Myanmar; the data may not be rigorous but are “good enough to program against.” This synthesis therefore intends to provide a broad brush picture of the landscape of poverty, malnutrition, and vulnerability across Myanmar and focuses on providing a typology of vulnerability to inform USAID’s initial dialogue about possible program and policy design to improve household food security..."
Author/creator: Shannon Wilson and Naw Eh Mwee Aye Wai
Language: English
Source/publisher: Myanmar Development Resource Institute - Centre for Economic and Social Development (MDRI-CESD)
Format/size: pdf (1.6 MB)
Date of entry/update: 11 April 2016

Title: Current Situation and Future Opportunities in Agricultural Education, Research and Extension in Myanmar
Date of publication: March 2013
Description/subject: "... Myanmar is an agricultural based country and the agriculture sector is the backbone of its economy. The agriculture sector contributes 34% of GDP, 23% of total export earnings, and employs 63% of the labour force. About 75% of the total population reside in rural areas and are principally employed in the agriculture, livestock and fishery sectors for their livelihood. Rice is the most important dominating crop and is grown in saline area mostly found in lower Myanmar especially in Ayeyarwady, Yangon, Taninthayi Divisions and also in Yakhine and Mon States. Deep-water rice is usually grown in areas of some restricted belts in Ayeyarwady, Bago, Taninthayi Divisions and Rakhine, Mon and Kayin States. Out of the total crop sown area of 10 million hectares, about 13% is under irrigation. The rest of the land has to rely on the rain for crop production. The population will grow to about 60 million by the year 2010 and the demand for local rice consumption alone, will be in the proximate of 20 millions tons. To be able to supply enough food for the increasing population and export the surplus, rice production will have to be increased up to 25 millions tons, by expanding the rice growing area up to 6 millions hectare. This scheme will further be enhanced by the adoption of modern proven technologies and provision of the required inputs in full. The Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation is making all-out efforts for the development of agriculture, taking measures as: efficient utilization of land and water resources; farm mechanization; introduction of new technologies; and supply of farm inputs. Agriculture being the largest economy of the country, the Ministry tries to stimulate public awareness and interest for better participation and investment in the sector. The government of the Union of Myanmar remains committed to the contribution of national as well as world food security. The Agriculture sector in Myanmar occupies a dominant position in the development of the national economy, and has a definite bearing on other socio-economic activities. Because of the high potential of land, water resources, man power resources and other mineral resources, Myanmar has been prominent as an agricultural country for many years and will continue to be so in the future. Given the importance of agriculture in Myanmar, agricultural education, research and extension are important priorities. In the process of developing the agricultural sector, conducting training and offering educational programs of international standard are crucial to the development of human resources..."
Author/creator: Khin Mar Cho
Language: English
Source/publisher: Myanmar Development Resource Institute - Centre for Economic and Social Development (MDRI-CESD)
Format/size: pdf (667K)
Date of entry/update: 11 April 2016

Title: Rapid Value Chain Assessment: Structure and Dynamics of the Rice Value Chain in Myanmar
Date of publication: March 2013
Description/subject: This Background Paper is an integral part of the Diagnostic Assessment. It involves an assessment of the Myanmar rice value chain within the context of the Myanmar rice industry. Special focus is paid to its structure and performance, dynamics, and future prospects. Also included is a consideration of its weaknesses and constraints that had influenced the development of the industry as well as an evaluation of the prospect of improving the value chain and consequently the industry and suggesting crucial steps that should be taken for the short game and the long game. Basically, the report integrates the findings from intensive literature review and desk research coupled with observations and interviews conducted during field visits in October and November 2012 and supplemented by persona communication with key players in the public and private sectors as well as civil society at various levels of the rice value chain.
Author/creator: Larry C.Y. Wong and Eh Mywe Aye Wai
Language: English
Source/publisher: Myanmar Development Resource Institute - Centre for Economic and Social Development (MDRI-CESD)
Format/size: pdf (1.7MB)
Date of entry/update: 11 April 2016

Title: Rice Productivity Improvement in Myanmar
Date of publication: March 2013
Description/subject: "... Rice productivity in Myanmar has stagnated in comparison with other rice producers in the region. Once the world’s largest rice exporter, Myanmar is now a relatively minor player exporting an average 631,000 MT annually over th past 4 years. However, the nation’s export potential remains high because of abundant land and water resources, recent indications of progressive policy reforms, increased agricultural investment, and constructive international engagement. Growing global demand for rice, increasing public and private investment in infrastructure, and the potential for significant yield increases, all point to a strong return on investments to improve rice productivity in the country..."
Author/creator: Glenn Denning, Kye Baroang, Tun Min Sandar and other MDRI and MSU colleagues
Language: English
Source/publisher: Myanmar Development Resource Institute - Centre for Economic and Social Development (MDRI-CESD)
Format/size: pdf (711K)
Date of entry/update: 11 April 2016

Title: 2012 Global Hunger Index
Date of publication: November 2012
Description/subject: The Challenge of hunger: ensuring sustainable food security under land, water and energy stresses..."World hunger, according to the 2012 Global Hunger Index (GHI), has declined somewhat since 1990 but remains “serious.” The global average masks dramatic differences among regions and countries. Regionally, the highest GHI scores are in South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa. South Asia reduced its GHI score significantly between 1990 and 1996—mainly by reducing the share of underweight children—but could not maintain this rapid progress. Though Sub-Saharan Africa made less progress than South Asia in the 1990s, it has caught up since the turn of the millennium, with its 2012 GHI score falling below that of South Asia. From the 1990 GHI to the 2012 GHI, 15 countries reduced their scores by 50 percent or more. In terms of absolute progress, between the 1990 GHI and the 2012 GHI, Angola, Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Malawi, Nicaragua, Niger, and Vietnam saw the largest improvements in their scores. Twenty countries still have levels of hunger that are “extremely alarming” or “alarming.” Most of the countries with alarming GHI scores are in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia (the 2012 GHI does not, however, reflect the recent crisis in the Horn of Africa, which intensified in 2011, or the uncertain food situation in the Sahel). Two of the three countries with extremely alarming 2012 GHI scores—Burundi and Eritrea—are in Sub-Saharan Africa; the third country with an extremely alarming score is Haiti. Its GHI score fell by about one quarter from 1990 to 2001, but most of this improvement was reversed in subsequent years. The devastating January 2010 earthquake, although not yet fully captured by the 2012 GHI because of insufficient availability of recent data, pushed Haiti back into the category of “extremely alarming.” In contrast to recent years, the Democratic Republic of Congo is not listed as “extremely alarming,” because insufficient data are available to calculate the country’s GHI score. Current and reliable data are urgently needed to appraise the situation in the country. Recent developments in the land, water, and energy sectors have been wake-up calls for global food security: the stark reality is that the world needs to produce more food with fewer resources, while eliminating wasteful practices and policies. Demographic changes, income increases, climate change, and poor policies and institutions are driving natural resource scarcity in ways that threaten food production and the environment on which it depends. Food security is now inextricably linked to developments in the water, energy, and land sectors. Rising energy prices affect farmers’ costs for fuel and fertilizer, increase demand for biofuel crops relative to food crops, and raise the price of water use. Agriculture already occurs within a context of land scarcity in terms of both quantity and quality: the world’s best arable land is already under cultivation, and unsustainable agricultural practices have led to significant land degradation. The scarcity of farmland coupled with shortsighted bioenergy policies has led to major foreign summary investments in land in a number of developing countries, putting local people’s land rights at risk. In addition, water is scarce and likely to become scarcer with climate change. To halt this trend, more holistic strategies are needed for dealing with land, water, energy, and food, and they are needed soon. To manage natural resources sustainably, it is important to secure land and water rights; phase out inefficient subsidies on water, energy, and fertilizers; and create a macroeconomic environment that promotes efficient use of natural resources. It is important to scale up technical solutions, particularly those that conserve natural resources and foster more efficient and effective use of land, energy, and water along the value chain. It is also crucial to tame the drivers of natural resource scarcity by, for example, addressing demographic change, women’s access to education, and reproductive health; raising incomes and lowering inequality; and mitigating and adapting to climate change through agriculture. Food security under land, water, and energy stress poses daunting challenges. The policy steps described in this report show how we can meet these challenges in a sustainable and affordable way."
Language: English
Source/publisher: International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), Concern Worldwide, Welthungerhilfe and Green Scenery:
Format/size: pdf (3MB)
Date of entry/update: 02 November 2012

Title: Sustainable agriculture and Food Security in Asia and the Pacific
Date of publication: April 2009
Description/subject: "The sixty-fourth session of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific took place at a time when rocketing prices of both food and oil were causing serious hardship. In response, the Commission decided that the theme topic for the sixty-fifth session in 2009 should be on food security and sustainable agriculture. Since then, the picture has been transformed. The global economy has sunk into recession – and prices for food, oil and other commodities have fallen back sharply. From this, you might conclude that the food emergency has passed – that we should concentrate only on the financial and economic crises. In fact, however, the economic crisis makes it even more urgent that we tackle food insecurity now. For millions of people across the Asia-Pacific region, the economic crisis will also be a food crisis. The prices they pay may have fallen, but their incomes have fallen further still. As governments face up to the current economic storms, they must ensure that everyone, everywhere, has enough to eat. This is a clear humanitarian and development priority, but it is also a political imperative; food insecure people make angry citizens. The first priority, therefore, is to check the resilience of social safety nets – and, if necessary, bolster them to meet the immediate crisis. But the region also needs to look to the future. As this study emphasizes, the world’s food system has become increasingly fragile. Food prices have dipped, but they will surely surge again when the global economy and the demand for food starts to recover. On present trends, the region will be hard pressed to meet that demand. Food security is being threatened from many directions, not least from unsustainable forms of agriculture that are degrading the soil, water and biological diversity – problems that will be exacerbated by climate change. Time to turn again, therefore, to sustainable agriculture – ensuring that farmers, and particularly small producers, have the support they need to grow nutritious food in ways that meet human needs today, while protecting vital environmental resources for future generations. Time also to capitalize on our efforts in regional cooperation – ensuring that we avoid food protectionism and, instead, use our regional strengths to build flexible and resilient systems of food security."
Language: English
Source/publisher: UNESCAP
Format/size: pdf (2.8MB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.unescap.org/65/documents/Theme-Study/st-escap-2535.pdf
Date of entry/update: 11 August 2009

Title: Ensuring Food Security – A Case for ASEAN Integration
Date of publication: December 2005
Description/subject: ABSTRACT: "The ASEAN member countries can be grouped into three sub-groups, each of which exhibits a distinct pattern with respect to food security issues. The first group is made up of the relatively food-secure countries of Singapore and Brunei. The second group consists of Malaysia, Thailand, Philippines, Indonesia, and Vietnam. In these countries, except for Vietnam, agriculture has contributed a declining share in GDP, employment, and international trade. In addition, food habits in these countries have changed dramatically in recent decades. The third group is composed of Cambodia, Lao PDR, and Myanmar—economies in transition that require special attention. A simple exercise shows that the area can collectively achieve food security via trade in rice and maize. Trade facilitation measures and the harmonization/equivalency of food regulation and control standards will reduce the cost of trade in food products. While specialization and revealed comparative and competitive indices point to complementarities between trade patterns among the ASEAN member countries, intra-ASEAN trade in agriculture is quite small. However, integration could address this problem. Further, if integration is to be used as a venue for ensuring food security, the member countries must agree on what food security collectively means to them, and what food items are important to each of them and the region, in general, so that regional integration and cooperation under the auspices of ASEAN can be promoted."
Author/creator: Amelia L. Bello
Language: English
Source/publisher: "Asian Journal of Agriculture and Development", Vol. 2, Nos. 1&2
Format/size: pdf (548K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.searca.org/ajad/archives/v-02/01-02/ajad_v2_n1_n2_bello.pdf
Date of entry/update: 01 January 2010

Title: Publications on "Access to land"
Description/subject: "Appetite for land" (pdf, 225 KB) Large-Scale Foreign Investment in Land Available in German (pdf, 265 KB) and French (pdf, 270 KB) Promoting the right to food. Experience gained at the interface of human rights and development work, with particular focus on Central America This publication was compiled by a work group on land rights in Central America who have been studying the issue for a number of years and have supported local initiatives engaged in activities to promote the right to food in Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador and Nicaragua. Collaborating in this work group are MISEREOR, Bread for the World, FIAN International, EED, Terre des Hommes, and Christliche Initiative Romero. The document takes stock of 10 years of experience gained in activities to advance the right to food. Available in German: "Das Recht auf Nahrung fördern" (pdf, 3,8 MB) and Spanish: "Promover el derecho a la alimentación" (pdf, 4 MB) Discussion paper "Access to land as a food security and human rights issue" (pdf, 3,7 MB) A Misereor discussion paper for dialogue with its partners The policy paper identifies several problems involved, such as the lack of access to productive resources, including land, water, forests, biological diversity etc. and the diverse problems concerning ownership which may even evolve in violent conflicts. Not only the growing concentration of land and the failure of land reform processes, but also the fragmentation of land and the overuse of existing natural resources have a tremendous impact on the scarcity of land. A dialogue with partners on "Access to land as a food security and human rights issue - a dialogue process" (pdf, 18 KB)
Language: English, German, French
Source/publisher: Misereor
Format/size: html, pdf
Date of entry/update: 25 March 2014