Agricultural improvements have yielded tremendous results, decreasing the number of undernourished people by 167 million in the last ten years alone. However, these improvements have often been made by increasing the amount of land under cultivation – a practice that cannot continue indefinitely. Agricultural expansion has also come at a price: soil erosion, deforestation and water pollution – compounded by higher and more volatile global temperatures – have already begun to reduce agricultural productivity. For this reason, Mercy Corps works to ensure agro-systems around the world are economically productive, nutritionally diverse and efficient – both today and in the future.
We help smallholder farmers – farmers with less than 1 hectare of land – and pastoralists develop their production capacity so they can increase productivity and weather environmental shocks and stresses. We also focus on improving agriculture-related products and services by working with traders, input suppliers, processors and government bodies. And our holistic approach extends further – to improving the nutrition of people who consume agricultural products. This might mean increasing a crop's nutritional value by improving how crops are harvested, stored and transported. We also work with families to help them diversify the crops they grow and educating communities about the benefits and conditions of good nutrition.
All stories about Agriculture
South Sudan: Realizing South Sudan's food potential
Many people are aware of the oil wealth in South Sudan, but it is less well known that my soon-to-be-independent country is incredibly fertile with huge agricultural potential.
Great minds think alike: farmers deserve our support
Farmers are on people’s minds these days, and they deserve to be.
Indonesia: From Seattle to Jakarta, food carts are hot stuff
In Seattle, the popularity of food carts has exploded in recent years.
Libya: Got chicken?
Two weeks ago, we walked into the grocery store here in Benghazi, Libya to look for chicken.
Guatemala: The different sparks of a cooking recipe
Part of the health and nutrition strengthening strategies used by Mercy Corps' PROCOMIDA program with Guatemalan communities consists of recipe demonstrations to beneficiary mothers.
Nepal: Bamboo and bio-engineering interventions for mitigation of riverbank erosion
Floods are a major hazard in Nepal contributing to endemic poverty, an occurrence that is likely to increase and magnify due to climate change.
Guatemala: Traveling the roads of resilient children
I recently went to visit the communities of Yalchactic I and Salvador Chizol, near the city of Cobán in Guatemala's mountainous Alta Verapaz region. A large portion of the access roads to these communities are in very bad shape.
Timor-Leste: Sharing the responsibility to grow more food
After a bumpy six hour drive from our head office in Dili, we finally reached our first destination on my recent field visit in Timor-Leste: the village of Maununu.
Fasting for the poor and hungry
For the last four days, I've been helping fight hunger by changing my diet. I've chosen a diet similar to that of many of the people Mercy Corps works with around the world: basic staple foods like rice, beans, greens and a bit of fruit.
Kosovo: A life-changing project for a Roma community
Ramadan Sahiti is a 37-year-old Roma farmer from the village of Koshare/Košare in southern Kosovo.