While parts of Southeast Asia have experienced rapid economic growth, millions of people have been left behind. These are often the rural poor, particularly women and ethnic minorities, who produce much of the region’s food in remote and marginally productive landscapes affected by environmental degradation, land conflict and climate change. Evidence indicates that agroforestry can play an important role in resolving many of these challenges in favour of rural poor, especially women.
The SIANI Mekong Expert Group on Agroforestry for Food and Nutrition Security, Sustainable Agriculture and Land Restoration convened and informed governments, civil society, private sector actors and researchers in Southeast Asia and Sweden about the importance of agroforestry for nutrition and food security for women and the rural poor and how to develop agroforestry to improve sustainable agriculture, mitigate climate change management and restore land.
This work contributed to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations’ (ASEAN) Guidelines for Agroforestry Development. The Guidelines were endorsed in October 2018 and some member states, like Cambodia and Myanmar, have already begun working on their implementation. FAO has also set in motion a technical cooperation programme with ASEAN to support the implementation of these Guidelines.