Thursday, November 30, 2006

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations

This week I thought I would talk about the International Organization the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). The FAO's mission is to defeat hunger. As such, they work with both developed and developing countries on issues related to food. For those of you that think that this means they deal with farming, that is correct, but they do a lot more. For example, just this week the FAO issued a press release on the effect of farming on greenhouse gas. This is in response to a report entitled "Livestock’s Long Shadow: Environmental issues and options" which reports that the livestock sector releases more greenhouse gases then the transport sector.

The FAO also issues country profiles on UN member states. These profiles provide links to publications from the FAO as well as maps of the countries with information on population, farming types, precipitation, etc.

Finally, the FAO collects a variety of statistics, including statistics on water, food supply, and fisheries. For example, according to the database FAOSTAT, Sri Lanka is the biggest exporter of tea and mate, followed by Kenya and China.

Want to see additional links to FAO web sites? Check out the library's guide to the FAO. If you are interested in seeing some of their print publications, we have many of them here at CU-Boulder and you can find them by searching the online catalog, Chinook.

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