Diversifying Agriculture for Better Lives

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20 February 2012
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The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in close collaboration with Khon Kaen University, Thailand, and National Research Council Thailand (NRCT), is pleased to announce the convening of a Regional Symposium on “Promoting underutilised food resources for better nutrition” to be held in Khon Kaen, Thailand, 21-23 May 2012. The Symposium will present case studies presenting the wealth of knowledge in indigenous communities in diverse ecosystems, the richness of their food resources, the strengths of the local traditional food systems, and the circumstances of the nutrition transition in indigenous communities. It will present evidence on local and traditional food systems and central role to public health improvement, and required policies at local, national and international levels for protection of food environments to ensure food security and nutritional quality. Documentation of local/traditional knowledge of use of diversity in developing strategies to cope with specific situations and recommendations made available on how to enhance good practices through their blending with scientific findings. The Symposium will help to identify policy options to promote greater use of local food diversity addressed and recommended at national and international level; and proposals for concrete short and medium term measures for actions needed to support conservation and sustainable use of indigenous and traditional foods to improve nutrition. This event will serve as the basis for future dialogue, debate and information exchange and facilitate wider support for an international movement committed to the implementation of effective, sustainable and long-term food-based solutions to hunger and malnutrition. As part of preparatory work for symposium, papers to be presented at the Symposium and be part of a publication on “Indigenous and Traditional food systems of Asia and the Pacific” are now being solicited.


  • “Wild” indigenous plants and animal origin collected from uncultivated land and forest (e.g. leafy plants, roots, berries, small rodents, and insects) and from aquatic environments (e.g. indigenous small fish, frogs and snails).
  • Semi-domesticated indigenous plants and animals, for example gardening of indigenous plant species and culture of indigenous fish species in rice fields in Asia.
  • Traditional cooking/preparation and preservation methods: a wide range of household level, small-scale cooking and processing methods applied to improve food properties such as fermentation, soaking, drying, smoking in particular of indigenous foods for enhancing nutritional value.
  • Identification of new partnerships and areas of collaboration, particularly in the direction of advocacy, policy and public awareness, research and funding to support food systems that preserve and sustain diverse traditional food cultures in Asia


Send all submissions in Microsoft Word format. FULL PAPER (including abstract, key words, conclusions, diagrams, references) up to 8 page paper. Please provide your name, affiliation, full mailing address, telephone / fax number and e-mail address. All submissions will be peer reviewed and edited by members of the Organizing Committee. Accepted papers will be published BEFORE THE CONFERENCE (both print and electronic format), that will be copyrighted and widely disseminated.


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One Response so far.

  1. Jai C Rana says:


    It is great to know about the symposium on the crops i.e under utilsed crops and wild edibles of the Indian Himalayn region in which I am working for the last 20 years. Looking forward to attend the same and to present my 20 years work.


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