Cracking the Nut 2016: Regenerating Rural & Agricultural Development

Report outlining lessons learned from the Cracking the Nut conference

This paper summarizes the discussions and insights gained from the Cracking the Nut 2016 conference organized by Connexus, in partnership with the Inter-American Development Bank, USAID and Catholic Relief Services.

The paper highlights the importance of applying a holistic approach based on climate-smart agricultural techniques reiterated during the conference, including soil restoration, soil water management, inter-cropping, and agroforestry, as well as the need for finance, investment and partnership between public and private sector stakeholders. The paper outlines best practices in tackling global challenges through three focused themes:

  1. Regenerating Rural and Agricultural Landscapes: 
    • How can public and private sector collaborate to restore deforested areas, depleted soils and scarce water supplies, while improving agricultural productivity? What incentives do companies offer to encourage their farmers to protect the environment and to apply agro-forestry and other climate-smart approaches? What models and technologies are cost effective for motivating small farmers to adapt their methods to protect soil, ground cover and natural habitats?
  2. Financing Environmentally Sustainable Development:
    • How can we ensure that all farmers, including women and youth, have access to finance, markets, fair prices and climate-smart technical assistance? What types of finance are needed to rebuild the environment and economic potential of areas where natural resources have been exhausted? How can we reduce risk and increase lending to scale innovative climate-smart technologies?
  3. Encouraging Investment in Climate-Smart Agriculture:
    • How can the private sector profitably invest in climate-smart agriculture? What technologies and investments can be made today to protect water and soil resources tomorrow? How can governments balance environmental protection policies with a desire to attract investments in rural and agricultural development?

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