Efforts to Fix COVID-19 Economic, Environmental BacklashBy Sofía Hanna | Thu, 08/12/2021 - 16:57
This week, the business platform “MAS México” announced its plans to support the automotive and agriculture industry. Students, technicians, livestock producers and state officials are being trained to identify animal injuries and clinical signs of diseases not commonly seen in Mexico to prevent further plagues.
Meanwhile, Mexico and Canada have agreed to collaborate towards new technology generation models for climate change. New food trade investigations and strategies could help exporters address difficulties in delivery strategies, lack of engagement and other external factors. Finally, the UN’s “Climate Change 2021: Physical Bases” report, warns about the need for urgent actions to reduce humanity’s role in climate change.
Interested in more? Here are the week’s major headlines in Agribusiness & Food!
- The governments of Queretaro, San Luis Potosi, Guanajuato, Aguascalientes and Jalisco, following the creation of the business platform “MAS México,” have announced plans to capitalize on the automotive and agriculture industries in the region. Manuel Alejandro González Martínez, Aguascalientes’ Minister of Economic Development, explained that the alliance wants to exploit the automotive and agricultural industries, which altogether represent 17.6 percent of the region’s GDP. Also, both industries generate annual exports of over US$50 million and employ about 600,000 people. The first action focuses on taking advantage of the digital platform-built months ago and utilizing the new module “Por Más Hecho en México.” The app is not only useful for networking, but it also works to attract local and foreign investors.
- The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (SADER) has provided virtual training to 2,471 students, technicians, livestock producers and state officials for more than a year to identify injuries and clinical signs in animals caused by diseases that are not common in Mexico. The online course Main Exotic Animal Diseases (AUTOSIM) is aimed at students of veterinary medicine and related careers. In the coming years, these students will be responsible for preventing and, if necessary, controlling and eradicating threats to the national livestock industry. The training consists of various modules in vesicular, arboviral, plague-type and dermal diseases, among others. The modules include approximately 32 hours of self-study, so participants can distribute their study time according to their needs since they can access the virtual classroom 24/7. At the end of the course, participants could obtain a certificate endorsed by SENASICA.
- Mexico, the US and Canada have agreed to collaborate and share information in regard to technology generation models for climate change. Mexico and the US share a significant extension of land that stretches from Arizona to central Mexico and includes New Mexico, Sonora and Chihuahua. SADER reports that this region presents similar problems, including soil degradation, poor water quality, careless use of resources, excessive herding and deforestation, so actions taken by one country will serve the other, with the appropriate adjustments. The agreement’s objective is to promote research and technology cooperation in the northern region of the continent through exchanges and partnerships for competitive and sustainable agricultural development that incorporate science, technology, innovation and knowledge sharing in areas of trilateral relevance.
- The Standards and Trade Development Fund’s (STDF) latest annual report explains that after the COVID-19 pandemic, food safety, animal and plant health will continue to be essential to safe trade. The fund reaffirms the need for sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) investments as a global public good, given how the world seemed to stop but food trade clearly could not. STDF also highlights the greater need to adopt new technologies and innovative solutions, which can help control and monitor pests and diseases. To do so, the fund calls for international cooperation and partnership to move forward and effectively aid global recovery from devastating shocks. The STDF also analyzed recovery plans considering the potential continuation of the global pandemic or a new major crisis emerging, the limited interest of developing countries stakeholders in STDF’s work, inadequate resources to deliver strategies, lack of engagement and other external factors.
- The new scientific report of the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) warns that unless urgent actions are taken, the window to limit the increase in global temperature to 1.5°C will quickly close. The report confirms that humans have irreversibly altered the planet’s climate and warns that the chance to reverse course, although very slim, is scientifically possible if immediate, urgent and firm actions are taken to reduce carbon emissions and protect and restore nature. The report highlights the need for international cooperation in the development and implementation of measures that are also fair and equitable for developing countries. WWF, Manuel Pulgar-Vidal, WWF Global Climate and Energy Leader, said that the report comes at “an important moment in the run-up to COP26 (2021 UN Climate Change Conference) because it is about certainty: certainty of the scale of the climate crisis and the role of humanity in driving extreme weather events; the certainty of how much we’ve changed the planet; and certainty that things will continue to get worse unless we change course immediately.”