Rome (Italy) held the 7th International Conference on Agricultural Statistics, organized by the Italian National Institute of Statistics in collaboration with FAO. The event focused on research studies and best practices for monitoring the agriculture-related targets of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and the changing needs and opportunities for agricultural statistics.
José Graziano da Silva, FAO General Manager, underlined that the adoption by the UN Statistical Commission of 230 different indicators to monitor the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and 169 targets of the 2030 Agenda represents a turning point for the global statistical system: The world needs to strengthen tried-and-tested statistics gathering systems as well as adopt innovative approaches and cost effective methodologies, such as the use of mobile technology or remote sensing imagery. FAO develops some initiatives to strengthen countries’ capacity and survey tools, such as the Food Insecurity Experience Scale to monitor food insecurity worldwide, and Agriculture Integrated Survey (AGRIS), to monitor economic, social and environmental aspects of farming activities. The agency is also working on gathering and harmonizing the information provided by countries to produce global and regional aggregates, all of which are available online through FAOSTAT, its statistical database on food, agriculture, fisheries, forestry, natural resources management and nutrition. FAOSTAT provides free, open and easy access to over 3 million time-series and cross-sectional data of 245 countries and territories.