The most important result of the conference was the common understanding of all speakers: family farms have a future because they are the epitome of sustainability – in Switzerland as well as worldwide.
Christine Badertscher had previously explained to the participants the existential emergencies in which developing countries find themselves. “Global trade agreements, landgrabbing and climate change projects have a profound impact on the livelihoods of farmers and mean that small businesses cannot survive economically,” she explained. This, in turn, has devastating social consequences, depriving rural youth of their prospects.
Despite these difficult conditions, family farms represent the greatest opportunity for the countries of the South. Christine Badertscher illustrated this using the example of two SWISSAID projects in Myanmar (green tea without a bitter aftertaste) and Tanzania (no hunger thanks to mobile phones). Operations in these projects are characterised by sustainability and a high degree of resilience in times of economic unpredictability. “They thus represent an important basis for achieving the sustainability goals of the UN Agenda 2030”, says Christine Badertscher.