Implications of Weeds and Weed Management on Food Security and Safety In The Asia-Pacific Region

Yaduraju, N T and Rao, A N (2013) Implications of Weeds and Weed Management on Food Security and Safety In The Asia-Pacific Region. In: 24th Asian-Pacific Weed Science Society Conference, 22-25 October, 2013, Bandung, Indonesia.

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The food price crisis of 2007 and 2008 caused widespread food shortages and food and nutrition insecurity the world over. Home to the largest number of poor and undernourished people in the world, the Asia and Pacific region (APR) was at the epicenter of the crisis and was hit extremely hard. Although food prices have eased since then, recent studies indicate that food prices will remain high and volatile in the future. Reducing the existing large crops yield gaps is one of the appropriate approaches to meet the growing regional food security demands. Crop yield gap reduction is possible by optimizing crop productivity through identification and alleviation of major impediments such as weeds, which are more adapted to wide range of environments. Weeds continue to cause yield losses ranging from 10 to 60% depending on the crop and associated environment. Appropriate weed management has the potential to ensure food security by enhancing productivity and increasing profitability of farmers by cutting costs. Judicious selection, integration and proper application of herbicides will guarantee consumers the safety of foods they consume. However, impact of globalization, climate change, genetically modified crops and other recent trends, also have an impact on weeds and weed management. Severe labour scarcity, shortage of water for agriculture, emphasis on organic and conservation agriculture, are redefining the way we address weed problem. The solutions adopted by the developed countries may not suit the vast majority of the countries in the APR. It is time to evolve APR’s own strategies and approaches. Besides these technological challenges, APR countries have to grapple with the problems of different sort such as the ignorance of vast majority of farmers about the weed problem, the inadequate capacity of the extension personnel and the insensitive administrators and policy makers. The weed scientists in APR countries have a daunting job at their hands to deal with this multitude of problems. Optimal weed management solutions, to meet the food security and safety needs, could be evolved from networking and collaboration with weed scientists from the developed countries in the region as well as from the other parts of the world.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Yield gap, integrated weed management, food security, climate change, Asia Pacific region
Subjects: Others > Agriculture-Farming, Production, Technology, Economics
Depositing User: Mr Siva Shankar
Date Deposited: 25 Mar 2014 10:47
Last Modified: 25 Mar 2014 10:47
Acknowledgement: We thank APWSS country representatives for interaction and sharing information.
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