Press and News Geoffrey Hawtin: Catalyst for Agricultural Innovation Honored with World Food Prize

We're delighted to announce the prestigious recognition of Geoffrey Hawtin - a luminary in agricultural innovation - with the prestigious World Food Prize for 2024. This accolade celebrates his pivotal role in advancing biodiversity conservation and sustainable agriculture, particularly during his tenure at Bioversity International and CIAT, now the Alliance. The prize was also awarded to Cary Fowler. Over 50 years their work engaged governments, scientists, farmers, and society, conserving over 6,000 crop and cultural plant species.

Geoffrey Hawtin's leadership as Director General of IPGRI and Bioversity International (from 1991 to 2003) propelled groundbreaking initiatives, emphasizing the preservation of agricultural biodiversity as crucial for resilient food systems. His advocacy for neglected and underutilized crops showcased their potential in mitigating global challenges such as climate change and malnutrition.

As Director General of CIAT in 2008 and 2009, Hawtin spearheaded transformative tropical agricultural research, prioritizing smallholder farming systems' productivity, profitability, and sustainability. Through collaborative partnerships and knowledge exchange, his initiatives drove innovation and empowered communities worldwide.

Hawtin's legacy underscores the significance of agricultural biodiversity in fortifying food systems against adversity while nurturing our planet's natural resources. His dedication to bridging science, policy, and practice serves as an enduring inspiration for sustainable agricultural solutions.

As we celebrate Geoffrey Hawtin's well-deserved recognition with the World Food Prize, we extend our heartfelt congratulations and gratitude for his transformative contributions. His legacy will continue to guide us as we navigate toward a more equitable and sustainable future for all.

Header Image Credit: World Food Prize