July 15, 2014 | By

Secretary Glickman Highlights Effective Food Security Investments in Guatemala, Honduras

Dan Glickman, The Chicago Council of Global Affairs’ Global Agricultural Development Initiative cochair and former US Secretary of Agriculture, recently traveled with the global poverty-fighting organization CARE on a Learning Tour to Guatemala and Honduras. There, he learned about effective US investments in food and nutrition security and saw firsthand the role that smallholder farmers and communities play in promoting local solutions.

Guatemala and Honduras both face high rates of malnutrition and hunger. Guatemala has the highest malnutrition rate in the Western hemisphere and the fourth highest rate worldwide, while an estimated 60 percent of Hondurans suffer from hunger and malnutrition.

In a new video from CARE, Secretary Glickman describes the innovative food security and agricultural development initiatives he observed in these Central American countries, from mothers’ groups in rural Guatemala who discuss their children’s nutrition and talks with Guatemala’s food and supermarket industry leaders about purchasing from local farmers, to meetings with high-level government leaders in Honduras and visits to smallholder Honduran papaya farms.

“I have spent much of my life working on agricultural issues,” Secretary Glickman notes. “Food production is very complicated. But at its heart is agricultural policy. We need policies that ensure that people can grow and buy enough nutritious food for themselves and for their families.” He goes on to observe that, “when you see these programs firsthand, you see lasting solutions to poverty that are found among the people and communities living in poverty. And if you empower one life, one woman, you really do empower the entire community.”

In addition to his leadership at The Chicago Council and at the USDA, Secretary Glickman is vice president of The Aspen Institute and executive director of The Aspen Institute Congressional Program, senior fellow at the Bipartisan Policy Center where he cochairs The Democracy Project, and a former Congressman from Kansas.

Read the findings from CARE’s Learning Tour to Guatemala and Honduras for additional details, and visit CARE’s website to learn more about their efforts to combat world hunger and ensure global food security.


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.


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| 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.