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
Mongolia: Better School Lunches - No, Really
Bat-Ulzii, Mongolia - Throughout much of Mongolia, school meals are the only nutrition that students receive.
Mongolia: Shepherding Tradition
The title of "Master Herder" is reserved for a select few across Mongolia. It conjures up a distinct image: an aged but still eminently capable man dressed in traditional robes, standing on the vast steppes, exercising an almost mystical control over his livestock.
Mongolia: Miracle Growth
Bulgan soum, Mongolia - This is a story about how political transformation, tourism and tomatoes created an oasis in the southernmost reaches of Mongolia's Gobi Desert. It begins at the end of the country's 70-year-long communist era with a man named Poli.
Mongolia: Preserving Nomadic Life
Central African Republic: Distributing seeds and feeding families
Starting at the source, we're helping people make the most of their agricultural livelihoods.
Lebanon: Tasting Newfound Success
India: Change Brewing in the Tea Lands
India: Pay Dirt
Moni Das's village has no name. It's simply referred to as Line 10, Deohall Division, Deohall Tea Estate, Assam. It is a microcosm of life inside Assam's estate fences: anonymous, hidden among acre upon acre of tea bushes and existing solely to serve the needs of the estate.
India: A Different Kind of Teatime
Dibrugarh is called India's tea city. But for some people, teatime is about hardship and inequality rather than a pause for relaxation.
India: Buzzing with Cosmic Energy
I sensed, right away, that Rajah Banerjee had something to tell us. It was in the measured way he carried himself, the arch of his eyebrows and the calculating glance he cast across the room. What's more, I immediately got the feeling that he would test me to see what I knew.