Recent events around agricultural research and innovation, such as the Global Conference on Agricultural Research for Development (GCARD3) held in April 2016 at Johannesburg, South Africa and the 5th Global Forum of Leaders in Agricultural Science and Technology (GLAST-2016) held at Lingshui, Hainan, China in December 2016, have focused on re-aligning research needs and priorities with countries’ own development needs and national processes as well as with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Presentations and discussions at both these events have indicated that the key challenges to agricultural research, innovation and development systems globally are increasingly recognized as:
- Adapting to and mitigating the effects of climate change to agriculture;
- Controlling the spread of trans-boundary animal, zoonotic and plant diseases and pests;
- The sustainable use of natural resources, especially land and water, for agriculture and forestry, and controlling environmental degradation;
- Managing agricultural biodiversity;
- Improving agricultural products, commodities trade and market chains especially for food safety and quality.
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