A report that called for the government to allocate at least 10 percent of its aid budget to agriculture and food security has been dismissed as “out of date” and “selective” by the Department for International Development (DfID). The report, Why no thought for food?, published by the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Agriculture and Food for Development, criticized DfID’s record on supporting agriculture in its overseas aid budgets and called on the department to increase its spending to match the 10% agreed by African countries under the Maputo Declaration. But the development minister Gareth Thomas hit back, saying the government had increased funding for agriculture by more than 50 percent over the past three years and had recommitted itself to supporting farming in its white paper, published in July last year. The white paper states DfID’s support of the pledge made by African leaders. “DfID funding for agriculture and food security has, in fact, increased by over 50% in the last three financial years,” Thomas said. (The Guardian, UK)

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