In 2019, CIMMYT marked the end of a decade of achievements and the beginning of a decade of opportunities to improve peoples’ livelihoods.
Groundbreaking crop research and partnerships offer opportunities for innovations in human and plant health to tackle global issues, such as COVID-19, wheat rusts, or the insatiable fall armyworm.
Many technologies are available to improve agri-food systems — and the converging challenges from climate change, population growth, environmental degradation, and persistent poverty require that humanity acts with urgency and that it integrates collective wisdom and technologies to build a better future. On behalf of the CIMMYT community, I would like to thank our funding and research partners for selecting us to work with them to improve livelihoods through maize and wheat science.
Achieving food security under current, EAT-Lancet, or a more likely intermediate diet scenario, will require new crop varieties that yield more grain per unit land area, that do so in ecologically sustainable cropping systems, and that increasingly meet desired nutritional and end-use qualities. In a nutshell, the world needs maize and wheat science more than ever before.
All over the globe, agricultural leaders have challenged CIMMYT to help them increase maize and wheat yields. But not simply increase: improve and stabilize production by making it more sustainable and resilient with more efficient resource use, while making space for other crops in order to diversify farmers’ fields and diets.
In 2019, African policymakers called for an increased use of science to achieve food security in the face of ever-increasing population and erratic climate. Bill Gates spoke about the “essential role of CGIAR research centers in feeding our future” and together with other stakeholders urged us to “do even better.” In his Gates Notes blog, he highlighted the great example of CIMMYT’s drought-tolerant maize.
In 2019, the CGIAR System decided that the new decade deserves a more united CGIAR. One that offers the opportunity for a paradigm shift and new solutions for the world’s poor and food insecure as we work toward achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.
As CIMMYT moves into One CGIAR, we will build on the strengths in the systems, programs, and projects that currently provide excellence in science and impact through the CGIAR Research Programs (CRPs) and Platforms. CIMMYT is committed to contribute to defining and transitioning to a One CGIAR that integrates the collective wisdom and technologies of the 15 current CGIAR Centers and works with partners to build a better future.
I hope you enjoy reading this report and finding out more about how CIMMYT adds to the development of a world with healthier and more prosperous people and with more resilient agri-food systems. I look forward to your feedback and invite you to work with us in the new decade of opportunities.
© International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT), 2020. All rights reserved. The designations employed in the presentation of materials in this publication do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of CIMMYT or its contributory organizations concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city, or area, or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries. CIMMYT encourages fair use of this material. Proper citation is requested.
On September 24, 2013, the newly formed United Nations (UN) High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development held its ﬁrst meeting. At the Rio+20 Conference, Member States also agreed to launch a process to develop a set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which were to build upon the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) that were established in 2000 and expired in 2015.
Of the 17 individual goals, 10 relate directly to CGIAR activities and to CIMMYT’s mandate. The SDGs have set the pathway for the next 15 years of agricultural, social, and economic development. Likewise, CGIAR has transformed its approach to ensure that its work aligns with the ambitious goals.
CIMMYT, through its research for development activities, is working toward a world free of poverty, hunger, and environmental degradation. CIMMYT and CGIAR efforts help bring the world closer to reaching the goals, such as the empowerment of women, the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, and the improvement of health and nutrition for the world’s poorest people.
CIMMYT’s work contributes to the following SDGs:
CIMMYT — the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center — is the global leader in publicly-funded maize and wheat research and related farming systems. Headquartered near Mexico City, CIMMYT works with hundreds of partners throughout the developing world to sustainably increase the productivity of maize and wheat cropping systems, thus improving global food security and reducing poverty. CIMMYT is a member of the CGIAR System and leads the CGIAR Research Programs on Maize and Wheat and the Excellence in Breeding Platform. The Center receives support from national governments, foundations, development banks and other public and private agencies.
For more information, visit www.cimmyt.org.