The United Nations' Food and Agricultural Organization, International Fund for Agriculture and World Food Program said delegates at an upcoming African development conference should pay special attention to food security.
They said the most effect way to reverse hunger and poverty in developing countries in Africa was through responsible government and private investments in sustainable agriculture and rural development.
For poverty, the U.N. agencies said growth in gross domestic product from the agricultural sector is usually a better overall form of relief than from other sectors.
Georgios Georgantas, an African director for the International Committee of the Red Cross, said last week some of the families trapped by violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo are cut off from access to basic food supplies. The U.N. agencies said food security was one of the ways in which rural communities can be more self-sufficient. It can also address some of the social stigma regarding a woman's role in African society.
A multilateral meeting on African development is planned in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, beginning June 30.