Skip to main content

Australia’s development program

Agricultural development and food security initiatives


The Australian Government is supporting stability and economic recovery by investing in agriculture and food security through a mix of global, regional and bilateral initiatives.

Pacific Food Security Initiative

$9.5million, Year 2020 - 2024

Across the Pacific, most people live in rural areas and depend on farming and fishing as sources of food, employment and income. As Pacific island countries work to manage the impacts of COVID-19, farming and fishing are emerging as vital industries underpinning food and income security. Through this Initiative, we will work in partnership with Governments, the private sector, NGOs and other community partners as well as with regional organisations and other donors to increase the availability and affordability of local, nutritious foods which are vital for health and long-term wellbeing. Invigorating Pacific food systems can also generate significant local income and employment, boosting economic opportunities for rural communities and providing effective, sustainable pathways to assist with recovery.

Global Agricultural and Food Security Program

$150 million, 2010 - 2024

Australia continues to be a strong supporter of the Global Agriculture and Food Security Program (GAFSP), providing a further contribution of $10 million in 2020.  GAFSP is a multilateral financing mechanism that emerged out of the G8 and G20 processes to boost investment in agriculture and food security. GAFSP has allocated close to US1.7 billion since 2010 which has assisted some 153 million farmers in some of the world’s poorest countries including Myanmar, Cambodia and Timor-Leste.  Tuvalu and Kiribati received GAFSP funding under the last funding round which targeted fragile states. A GAFSP replenishment commenced in 2020 and as at October 2020, some US$300 million has been raised which will assist developing countries to recover and rebuild from COVID-19.

GAFSP provides large grants to low-income countries and small grants to Producer Organizations in order to assist them to implement national strategies to raise agricultural productivity, link farmers to markets, improve non-farm rural livelihoods, and reduce risk and vulnerability. Through, its private sector financing arrangements it also provides concessional and blended finance to agribusinesses, rural banks and other private sector actors to stimulate additional agribusiness and rural finance activity in low-income countries.

Additional information on the partnership can be found at Global Agriculture and Food Security Program (GAFSP).


$24.5 million, 2013-2023

In 2013 a group of G20 countries including Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom, and the United States, in partnership with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, created AgResults, a US$153 million multilateral initiative incentivizing private sector action and investment through ‘payment for results’ awards that promote the uptake of innovative technologies by smallholder farmers at scale. These prizes are awarded to competing businesses based on the verified achievement of pre-defined results and are intended to fast-track the adoption of beneficial agricultural technologies and practices.

AgResults’ projects include cultivation of higher yielding, more profitable and more nutritious crop varieties; increasing smallholder productivity; reduced greenhouse gas emissions through improved farm management and the development of new vaccines for debilitating livestock diseases.

By supporting expansion of the private sector in developing countries, AgResults is helping communities manage the economic impacts of COVID-19, and build sustainable pathways to recovery.

Additional information on the partnership can be found at

Market Development Facility Phase 2

$69.5 million, 2017-2022

The Market Development Facility (MDF) stimulates investment, business innovation and regulatory reform in order to create additional jobs and increase the income of poor women and men. To achieve this, MDF negotiates partnerships with strategically positioned private and public sector organisations in its countries of operations (Fiji, Timor-Leste, PNG and Sri Lanka) and the Pacific region. Each partnership is comprised of a tailor-made package of activities that enables the partner to innovate, invest or undertake reforms such that small farms and firms benefit from better access to production inputs, services and end markets.

MDF utilises the Making Markets Work for the Poor or Market Systems Development (MSD) approach through partnerships with local businesses that are willing and able to invest in new practices to improve business performance, stimulate economic growth and ultimately provide benefits for the poor – as workers, producers, and consumers.

MDF’s response to the COVID-19 crisis focuses on 3 key areas – expanded reporting, improving communication platforms and brokering of new interventions in accordance with a “build back better” approach

Phase 2 of MDF is building on Phase 1 which began in 2011.

Additional information on the partnership can be found at Market Development Facility.

Related documents

Name of document Year published
Market Systems Development Synthesis Review and management response 2019

Grow Asia Partnership with the World Economic Forum (WEF)

$15.6 million, 2014 - 2022

Australia has invested in a 'Grow Asia' partnership with the World Economic Forum (WEF) to strengthen sustainable and inclusive agricultural development and food security in the ASEAN region.  Grow Asia works to improve inclusive and environmentally responsible agricultural development and food security in the ASEAN region by unlocking private sector investment and supporting regional cooperation.  It brings together smallholders, governments, companies, NGOs and other stakeholders to develop inclusive and sustainable agricultural value chains.  By convening and supporting partnerships, generating practical lessons, enabling policy dialogue and engaging the public, private and producer sectors, Grow Asia delivers cost effective development impact. Grow Asia has so far collaborated with more than 520 partner organisations and 46 working groups across its six country partnerships (Cambodia, Indonesia, Myanmar, Papua New Guinea, Philippines and Vietnam) reaching more than 1.7 million smallholder farmers including by improving value chains and linking farmers with markets. Grow Asia also assists the ASEAN Secretariat in their efforts to develop supportive agricultural policies and an enabling environment for private sector development.

Grow Asia convened public- private sector – producer collaboration to share good practices and develop action-orientated regional responses to COVID 19.  Action plans were developed to solve some of the weaknesses that COVID 19 has revealed in the ASEAN food system in relation to logistics of rural food supply; access to mobile money; digital marketing platforms and digital enabling environment.

Additional information on the partnership can be found at Grow Asia.

Related documents

Name of document Year published
Grow Asia Mid-Term Review and management response 2018

* The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) is committed to high standards of transparency and accountability in the management of the Australian aid program through publishing information on our website, including policies, plans, results, evaluations and research. Our practice is to publish documents after the partner government and any other partners directly involved in the delivery of the initiative have been consulted. Not all material published on this site is created by the Australian aid program and therefore not all documents reflect our views. In limited circumstances some information may be withheld for reasons including privacy and commercial sensitivity.

Back to top