A family farm encompasses familial groups, indigenous clusters and neighbourhood co-operatives, whether they are involved in farming crops, livestock or marine creatures.
The I.Y.F.F. aims to raise the profile of family and small-scale farming by focusing world attention on its significant role in eradicating hunger and poverty, providing food security and nutrition, improving livelihoods, managing natural resources, protecting the environment, and achieving sustainable development, particularly in rural areas. Through local knowledge and sustainable, innovative farming methods family farmers can improve yields and create more nutrient-dense and diverse food systems.
There are a number of factors essential to the successful development of family farming: agro-ecological conditions, access to markets, access to land & natural resources, access to technology & extension services, access to financial, demographic, economic & sociocultural conditions.
Family farming has an important socioeconomic, environmental and cultural role:
- family and small-scale farms are inextricably linked to world food security
- family farms preserve traditional food products, while contributing to a balanced diet and safeguarding the world's agro-biodiversity and the sustainable use of natural resources
- family farming represents an opportunity to boost local economies, especially when combined with specific policies aimed at social protection and well-being of communities
Thoughout this region there has been a proud tradition of family farms being the backbone of agriculture and an essential element of the history of land settlement, so spare a thought for our farmers now and then.