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Beyond the Rows is a Monsanto Company blog focused on one of the world’s most important industries, agriculture. Monsanto employees write about Monsanto’s business, the agriculture industry, and the farmer.
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World Economic Forum’s (WEF) “New Vision for Agriculture”

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Monsanto’s executive leadership played an active role in the inception and development of the World Economic Forum (WEF) “New Vision for Agriculture.” Today, 26 leading partner companies, representing the full food value chain, are working to build a framework for advancing global agriculture over the course of the next several decades. 

The Vision they share focuses on three critical goals: 

1.      To meet nutritional demands while providing affordable choices across the food value chain.

2.      To conserve or enhance the quality and quantity of natural resources and meet the challenges of changing climate.

3.      To drive rural and national economic development around the globe with well-targeted investments. 

The initiative established a “20/20/20” framework for achieving results, which specifies: increasing productivity by 20 percent per decade, reducing the environmental footprint by 20 percent per decade and increasing the income of the rural family by 20 percent per decade. 

The Vision’s 2012 report, Putting the New Vision for Agriculture into Action: A Transformation Is Happening, outlines six elements that are essential to accomplishing large-scale transformation. These are Leadership and Stakeholder Alignment, Clear Strategy and Priorities, Concrete Investment and Entrepreneurship Pipeline, Enabling Hard and Soft Infrastructure Policies and Investments, Catalytic Financing and Risk Management Solutions, and Robust Mechanisms and Institutions for Delivery, Implementation and Durability. 

While the New Vision initiative draws upon experiences and developments occurring in many parts of the world, the report describes specific country-led initiatives launched by the Vision team in Vietnam, Indonesia, Mexico and Tanzania, and creation of the GROW Africa task force to develop similar initiatives for other interested African countries. The GROW Africa partnership, convened jointly by the African Union, The New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) and the WEF, works to accelerate sustainable investment in African agriculture to improve the continent’s food security. 

A transformation of the global food system is underway, representing tremendous potential to improve livelihoods and ecosystems worldwide. Along with the 26 partner companies contributing leadership and technical expertise, the Vision initiative’s knowledge partners—the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the Harvard Kennedy School’s Corporate Social Responsibility Initiative, and the International Food Policy Research Institute—are actively involved in this work. The WEF’s Global Agenda Council on Food Security, a high-level multi-stakeholder group, also provides guidance in an advisory role. 

This article is excerpted from Monsanto’s 2011 Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainability Report. The full report can be found at Monsanto.com.

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