An Agricultural Renaissance
“There has never been a greater need for an Agricultural Renaissance. The many voices of farmers, echoing across centuries of scarcity and abundance, challenge us to find new ways forward, paths that produce abundance for expanding populations while rejecting wasteful destruction of resources. We must seek these new ways to collaborate and innovate together. For if we can create an unprecedented pathway of collaboration as many peoples who inhabit this small planet, we may be able to tell the remarkable story of our species as it re-learns to thrive sustainably.”
The 21st Century Agriculture Renaissance: Solutions from the Land report was written by farmers, ranchers, foresters and other land stewards, advised by a broad team of nationally and globally renowned experts: scientists, climate and clean energy authorities, conservation and environmental specialists, food systems and supply chain partners, economists, government agency officials, and more. It lays out a vision for an agricultural renaissance in this century and offers a model for constructing sustainable and resilient systems across working landscapes to counter growing interlinked global food security, nutrition, health and climate challenges.
Thanks to hard work, indigenous knowledge, innovation and technology, and uncommon collaboration among those who make their living off the land, agriculture is poised to bloom, grow, and emerge as a primary solution pathway towards the achievement of worldwide sustainable development goals. SfL invites partners across the planet to join in this epic quest and movement to position farmers, ranchers and foresters at the forefront of addressing global challenges.
A.G. Kawamura is a third generation produce grower and shipper from Orange County, California. From 2003 to 2010 he served as the Secretary of the California Department of Food and Agriculture. He is founding co-chair of Solutions from the Land (solutionsfromtheland.org), a nationally recognized non-profit that is developing innovative and sustainable climate smart collaborations for 21st century agriculture. He serves on multiple boards and advisory committees including the Farm Foundation Board; Western Growers Board and former Chair; Roots of Peace Board; CSU Agricultural Research Institute, Board of Governors; Ag Advisory Committee for the Chicago Council; Bipartisan Policy Center, Ag & Forestry task force; Advisory Council for Honor the Harvest.
For over 40 years Mr. Kawamura has pursued a lifelong goal to work towards an end to hunger and malnutrition. Locally, he is founding chair of Solutions For Urban Ag (SFUA.org). He has worked closely with Regional Food Banks and stakeholders to create exciting urban ag projects that focus on nutrition, hunger, education and advanced food systems. As a progressive farmer, Mr. Kawamura has a lifetime of experience working within the shrinking rural and urban boundaries of Southern California. A.G. graduated with a BA from UC Berkeley and was a member of Class XX of the Calif. Ag Leadership Program.
Howard has been involved with sustainable agricultural and agroforestry systems, plant breeding, molecular biology and genetics for over 50 years. He has worked with indigenous communities, NGO’s, governmental agencies and the private sector. His academic career spans 45 years. He served as the Co-Chairperson for the 1st and 2nd World Congress of Agroforestry. He co-authored the Mid-Term Review of the CGIAR, co-authored, 21st Century Agricultural Renaissance: Solutions from the Land, he was the lead author on the biotechnology chapter for the IAASTD Global Report. Shapiro founded the African Orphan Crops Consortium (AOCC) and the African Plant Breeding Academy in 2012. The effort will sequence, assemble and annotate 101 key food cultivars, which are the backbone of African nutrition. 2021, he initiated the African Plant Breeding Academy. CRISPR aiming to deploy the latest CRISPR technologies (i.e., genome editing) to fast-track development of new sources of vital traits in food crops in Africa.
In August of 2018 he co-authored, in PLoSBiology, the landmark paper, that shows for the first time a maize landrace grown in nitrogen-depleted fields near Oaxaca, Mexico, where up to 82% of the plant nitrogen is derived from atmospheric nitrogen. This work was done under the Nagoya Protocol. In August of 2022 he co-authored, in Plant Biotech Journal, a breakthrough paper, Genetic modification of flavone biosynthesis in rice enhances biofilm formation of soil diazotrophic bacteria and biological nitrogen fixation.
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An Agricultural Renaissance, led by innovative and entrepreneurial farmers, ranchers and foresters constructing sustainable, profitable and resilient systems that lay the foundation for a world of abundance on many scales capable of producing nutritious food, feed, fiber, clean energy, healthy ecosystems, quality livelihoods, and strong rural economies.