November 24, 2014

Big Ideas and Emerging Innovations

REUTERS/Rafiqur Rahman

The Floating Gardens of Bangladesh
A Bangladeshi nonprofit organization is training farmers to tend an unusual source of food and income: a floating farm with a duck coop, fish enclosures, and vegetable garden moored by rope to the riverbank. Floating farms are a way to help Bangladeshis live with rising waters, as climate change threatens to worsen the severity and duration of floods.
Fighting Climate Change with Indigenous Livelihoods
Indonesia is the world’s fastest deforester and its third largest greenhouse gas emitter. But indigenous communities are already modeling ways that strong economics can coexist with sustainable forest management. With new legal protections and initiatives that are helping to increase the economic value of protected ecosystems, indigenous communities could have a huge role to play in halting deforestation and climate change.

DNA Spray-On Technology Could Revolutionize Food Traceability
DNATrek, a Bay Area startup, is hoping to revolutionize the food traceability industry with DNA “barcodes” that can be added to fruits and vegetables via a liquid spray or a wax. This liquid solution containing unique bits of DNA that gets sprayed on foods in order to easily identify information about where it came from and how it was produced in the event of an outbreak or recall.
Holding Back the Sahara
Overgrazing and climate change are the major causes of the Sahara’s advance in northwestern Senegal. Since 2008, however, Senegal has been fighting back against the encroaching desert, planting seedling trees along a 340-mile ribbon of land that is the country’s segment of a major pan-African regeneration project, the Great Green Wall.


The Global Food and Agriculture Program aims to inform the development of US policy on global agricultural development and food security by raising awareness and providing resources, information, and policy analysis to the US Administration, Congress, and interested experts and organizations.

The Global Food and Agriculture Program is housed within the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, an independent, nonpartisan organization that provides insight – and influences the public discourse – on critical global issues. The Council on Global Affairs convenes leading global voices and conducts independent research to bring clarity and offer solutions to challenges and opportunities across the globe. The Council is committed to engaging the public and raising global awareness of issues that transcend borders and transform how people, business, and governments engage the world.

Support for the Global Food and Agriculture Program is generously provided by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.


1,000 Days Blog, 1,000 Days

Africa Can End Poverty, World Bank

Agrilinks Blog

Bread Blog, Bread for the World

Can We Feed the World Blog, Agriculture for Impact

Concern Blogs, Concern Worldwide

Institute Insights, Bread for the World Institute

End Poverty in South Asia, World Bank

Global Development Blog, Center for Global Development

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Harvest 2050, Global Harvest Initiative

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One Acre Fund Blog, One Acre Fund

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Oxfam America Blog, Oxfam America

Preventing Postharvest Loss, ADM Institute

Sense & Sustainability Blog, Sense & Sustainability

WFP USA Blog, World Food Program USA