Environment

Bias Against Female Farmers Shrinks Food Harvests

Monday, March 7, 2011

A gender gap in agriculture leaves female farmers with harvests that are 20 to 30 percent less than male counterparts. Closing that gap could rescue hundreds of millions of people from undernourishment claims a U.N. report released today.



(WOMENSENEWS)--If female farmers had stronger legal rights and more business opportunities millions of people would be better fed, claims a U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization report released today.

In its annual report, "The State of Food and Agriculture," the U.N. agency finds that global harvests could rise by between 2.5 and 4 percent if women had stronger rights.

The organization estimates that 925 million people are currently undernourished. Closing a gender gap, which leaves female farmers' yields 20 to 30 percent lower than their male counterparts, could reduce undernourishment numbers by between 100 million and 150 million people.

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