U.S. and Ukraine to address global food insecurity
In a meeting with U.N. ambassadors, United States Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack announced the USDA and the Ministry of Agrarian Policy and Food of Ukraine are entering into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). The MOU will help coordinate the countries’ agricultural sectors and build a partnership to address food insecurity.
“Ukraine needs the world’s support,” Vilsack says. “This week I met with Ukrainian Minister of Agrarian Policy and Food Mykola Solskyi to express USDA’s commitment to helping rebuild and strengthen Ukraine’s agriculture sector. This MOU will amplify the strategic partnership between our two nations and leverage our collective strength to enhance productivity, address supply chain issues, and identify food security challenges.”
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Vilsack says Russia’s invasion of Ukraine poses a threat not only to the food systems of Ukraine but also to countries in Africa and the Middle East.
“Russia is using food as a weapon and a tool of war to threaten the livelihoods of those around the world, and that is something the agriculture community cannot and will not stand for,” Vilsack says.
The MOU establishes a three-year partnership between the countries. It guarantees a consistent sharing of information regarding crop production, emerging technologies, climate-smart practices, food security, and supply chain issues to boost productivity for both the U.S. and Ukraine.
USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service will also provide Ukraine with technical assistance for animal health, biosecurity, and sanitary and phytosanitary controls. The U.S. also plans to use the Borlaug Fellowship Program and re-establish the Cochran Fellowship Program to enhance U.S.– Ukraine collaboration and research.