MORE than 100 food security experts have gathered in Brisbane to help solve the global worsening food crisis.
The event is being hosted by the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR), which is celebrating 40 years of operation.
National Farmers' Federation president Fiona Simson said climate change, conflict and COVID-19 had reversed the gains made in food security in recent decades, resulting in 690 million people going hungry each day.
The World Bank defines people living on less than US$2.15/day (A$3.36) as being in extreme poverty. About 140 countries are affected.
The goal is to bring the global poverty rate to less than 3 percent by 2030.
"Through our agricultural innovation systems and long experience with climate extremes and volatility, Australia has strong and diverse expertise that can help address these challenges, many of which we share with our neighbouring countries," said Mrs Simson, who is also chair of Australia's Commission for International Agricultural Research.
"For this reason, the commission is hosting a series of dialogues focusing on transformative food system options that need urgent global support through international research and development collaboration," Mrs Simson said.
Participants include World Business Council for Sustainable Development chairman Sunny Verghese; Sustainable Development, World Bank, vice president Dr Juergen Voegele; CGIAR executive managing director Dr Claudia Sadoff; Australia's special agriculture representative Su McCluskey and director general of icipe Dr Segenet Kelemu.
ACIAR manages Australia's $20-$25 million a year investment, supporting some 9000 scientists, including many Australian scientists, across about 90 countries.
The specialist agricultural research-for-development agency, is charged with improving food security and reducing poverty among smallholder farmers and rural communities in the Indo-Pacific region.
ACIAR chief executive officer Professor Andrew Campbell said co-invested collaborative research and capacity building would be critical to address the food crisis.
"We hope to see many opportunities to strengthen partnerships and transform agrifood systems emerge as a result of this week's discussions," Prof Campbell said.
CGIAR is the global partnership that unites international organisations including ACIAR, which are engaged in research about food security.
CGIAR managing director Claudia Sadoff said Australia's investment had resulted in innovations that have led to wide-scale improvements in livelihoods food and nutrition security across the Asia-Pacific region.
"Our partnership with Australia brings significant benefits to both parties where lessons learned from our work around the world can bring benefits at home while at the same time providing an important opportunity to contribute globally towards the sustainable development goals," Dr Sadoff said.
The Australian Commission for International Agricultural Research and the Policy Advisory Council, which advise the Foreign Minister on food security issues, are also meeting in Brisbane, alongside the TropAg International Agricultural Conference.