Vol. 48 Nr. 2/2014: Family Farming

2014 is the International Year of Family Farming. What makes family farms so important is that they are the main producers of food consumed locally in both developed and developing countries. There are around 525 million family farmers, and they account for well over half of all agricultural production. Thus they play a crucial role in maintaining global food security. To raise awareness of this significance, but also to show governments and society what they have to do to support family farms in performing this important role is the notion behind the United Nations’ proclaiming the International Year of Family Farming. We have asked representatives of international organisations, science, agricultural extension services and development co-operation and, last but not least, a family farmer himself to show us where they believe the strengths of the family farming model lie and what, from their point of view, needs to be done for family farms to take full advantage of their potential – all of this provided, of course, that natural resources are used in a sustainable and responsible manner.