COVID-19 underlined the vulnerability of global agriculture and food systems. Global hunger increased under the shadow of COVID-19, and close to 12 percent of the global population – over 900 million people – were severely food insecure in 2020.
When COVID-19 hit, GAFSP was quick to respond to the threats of hunger, malnutrition, and disrupted livelihoods that accompanied the pandemic by supporting locally-led solutions and existing projects to mitigate impacts and work towards recovery. While responding to immediate needs is essential, GAFSP focuses on strengthening the long-term performance, resilience, and sustainability of agriculture and food systems.
In 2020, GAFSP allocated close to $60 million in additional funding to 16 public sector and producer organization-led projects to top up or re-purpose projects. Smallholders were able to access agricultural inputs, receive training on post-harvest techniques, and gain better access to local and national markets.
In 2021, GAFSP allocated $121 million in public sector grants to 9 countries and, for the first time, $30 million in grants to producer organizations in 12 countries, to strengthen sustainable food systems in response to rising food insecurity linked to COVID-19, climate change, and increasing conflict.
Private Sector Financing
Through the Private Sector Window, GAFSP supported clients with restructuring, working capital, and short-term funding to help them stay afloat as COVID-19 pressures rose. We also provided advisory support to clients who were forced to reconfigure their operations and digitize supply chains.