Climate has a significant impact on our food systems. Climate change can disrupt food availability, reduce access to food, and affect food quality. Weather extremes, rising temperatures, droughts, floods – these impact the ability of a farmer to grow food. With the United Nations predicting that by 2050, there will be almost 10 billion people in the world needing 70 per cent more food, farmers should be seen as heroes as they grow food under increasingly challenging conditions.
Syngenta is one of the world’s leading agriculture innovation companies that brings technology-driven solutions and services. It empowers farmers to unlock the potential of agriculture to “feed and heal our planet”, as explained by the Africa and Middle East Business Unit Head, Jerome Barbaron. In this important sector, deeply impacted by climate change, Syngenta strives to make farming profitable, productive, and regenerative.
Carbon already resides in soil than in the atmosphere and all plant life combined. With the help of science, Syngenta strives to help achieve healthier plants with healthier roots that can capture further carbon and help tackle climate change.
Barbaron notes that “Syngenta’s vision is to empower farmers to unlock the potential of agriculture”. He explains that “72 per cent of farmers globally are worried about the short to medium term impact of climate change”, underlining the importance of providing them with “the right product, the right advice and the right support tailored to their local needs”.
Ülkü Schmithüsen, Business Area Head at Syngenta says, “With an evidence-based approach, we develop high-quality inputs and agronomic techniques that accelerate the path towards more food secure, nutritious, and sustainable food systems.”
Locally adapted support to farmers
A farmer’s output depends heavily on the environment. Farmers share how climate change has impacted them and how they are overcoming these challenges with Syngenta. One farmer talks about the SABA Plus cereal initiative, which helped wheat farmers in Morocco increase their yields for this staple crop affected by severe droughts. Hassan Belkacem, Senior Technical Field Scientist at Syngenta explains that the “initiative provides a complete programme regarding the wheat farming phases.”
Another farmer underlines how Syngenta has helped identify and manage new pest pressures and how the company helps make farming more efficient. Water security remains a key challenge in the Middle East and North Africa and more efficient use of resources also means more efficient water use.
Speaking from the Syngenta Knowledge Centre in Jordan, Schmithüsen says, “Farmers in different parts of the world can face unique challenges. They often have different soils, different climatic conditions, and in turn different pest, weed, and disease pressures. Through our knowledge centres, we provide locally adapted solutions and improved agronomic techniques.”
The important role of biodiversity is underlined by Belkacem, who introduces Syngenta’s Operation Pollinator. According to the United Nations, more than 75 per cent of the world’s food crops rely to some extent on insects and other animals for pollination. Through Operation Pollinator, spaces like field margins and headland are used to create a habitat for pollinators and beneficial insects. This provides farmers with important ecosystem services like pollination. Belkacem also explains how Syngenta’s R&D center at Agadir, Morocco supports sustainable agriculture.
Syngenta is bringing new and improved solutions to farmers around the world, from yield-enhancing innovations that deliver food security and help mitigate climate, to sustainable agronomic advice that helps unlock the power of nature. In the Middle East and North Africa, the company is a leading partner of choice.