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Forests, trees and household food security

Working papers

Forestry and food security? For the forester deciding on the timing of the next timber sale or worrying about the regeneration losses incurred by browsing livestock and wild animals, the issue of food security may seem as though it belongs in another realm ... of agricultural production, grain prices, droughts and population explosion. And yet, in many rural areas forests and farm trees provide critical support to agricultural production, they provide food, fodder and fuel, and they provide a means of earning cash income.

The focus of this paper is on the socio-economic aspects of forestry's role in household food security. It synthesizes findings from a longer study conducted for the FAO Forestry Department which draws together information on household food and income which are derived from activities dependent on tree and forest products. It examines the changing uses of these resources, focussing particularly on the impact on the poor and women. It also addresses the consequences of decreasing forest resources and considers the implications for management of forests as well as trees outside the forests.

Julia Falconer and J.E. Mike Arnold