December 4, 2018

Featured Commentary: A Fish Story That Connects Trade and Development

This piece was originally posted on Agri-Pulse

By Liz Hare

Editor's Note: Agri-Pulse and the Chicago Council on Global Affairs are teaming up to host a monthly column to explore how the US agriculture and food sector can maintain its competitive edge and advance food security in an increasingly integrated and dynamic world.

American soy farmers know that investment in developing economies today builds US soy’s customers for tomorrow. In the simplest terms, children in Pakistan and elsewhere require nutrients to learn and grow, and people of all ages need sustained access to affordable, nutritious food to contribute productively to local and global communities. Farmers around the world need access to best management practices and resources–such as soy-based extruded fish feed–that enable product commercialization beyond subsistence, and integration into global economies. Trade fills critical gaps in value chains that drive food insecurity–integration in global economies can fuel a healthy and prosperous future for developing markets. In this way, trade improves lives worldwide for both farmers and consumers.

Almost 20 years ago, recognizing a global need for more protein, visionary leaders from ten state soybean boards founded the American Soybean Association’s World Initiative for Soy in Human Health (ASA/WISHH), laying the foundation for US soy trade in emerging markets like Pakistan that need more protein for their growing populations.  We are proud to see the fruits of this vision and share the success of the organization’s initiatives. 

In September 2011, WISHH launched the US Department of Agriculture-funded FEEDing Pakistan project with the goal of reducing the protein gap in Pakistan specifically through improvement of the aquaculture feed value chain. The FEEDing Pakistan project increased the supply and quality of soy-based aquaculture feed, generating opportunities to improve production efficiency and ultimately consumer access to safe, affordable fish protein. Strong support from U.S. land grant universities including Kansas State University, the University of Arizona and Auburn University, in partnership with leading academic institutions in Pakistan, helped generate a class of young leaders committed to aquaculture in Pakistan. Furthermore, public private partnerships developed throughout the life of the project garnered sustained investment and policy commitments necessary to spur sector growth.


Continue reading on Agri-Pulse>>



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

The Global Food Banking Network

Harvest 2050, Global Harvest Initiative

The Hunger and Undernutrition Blog, Humanitas Global Development

International Food Policy Research Institute News, IFPRI

International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center Blog, CIMMYT

ONE Blog, ONE Campaign

One Acre Fund Blog, One Acre Fund

Overseas Development Institute Blog, Overseas Development Institute

Oxfam America Blog, Oxfam America

Preventing Postharvest Loss, ADM Institute

Sense & Sustainability Blog, Sense & Sustainability

WFP USA Blog, World Food Program USA


| By Janet Fierro

Guest Commentary - Rural Niger Women find Opportunity and Hope through Innovative Business Model

When researchers set out to find natural ways to manage a crop-destroying pest in sub-Saharan Africa cowpea fields they knew the results could have significant positive impact on smallholder farmers. What they may not have expected was the significance of the cottage industry it inspired and the entrepreneurial spirit of the rural women of Niger who led it.