Records of the Consultative Group on Food Production & Investment in Developing Countries
- WB IBRD/IDA CGFP
- 1975 - 1978
The records of the Consultative Group are of three types: the records of the four meetings of the Group, the correspondence of the secretariat, and the files on the projects sponsored by the Group.
Read together, the records of the meetings and the correspondence provide a miniature study of the difficulties of international cooperation in the middle of the Cold War. The Consultative Group was organized by the World Bank, the Food and Agriculture Organization, and the United Nations Development Program, each of whom had a slightly different view of the mission of the Group. Shortly after the Group began its work, the United Nations slightly changed the charge to the Group; the United States, which had been the original sponsor of the idea of a Consultative Group, grew disenchanted; the Soviet bloc nations were not represented on the Group; uncertainly over the intentions of the OPEC nations in supporting food production grew; while tensions between food importing nations and food exporting nations hovered over debates. Add to this an injunction to the secretariat to coordinate but not to operate programs, all the while serving three masters at once, and the Group was probably doomed from the start. All of these topics can be researched in the records.
The project files are primarily those of national food plans. The Group's principal effort was to assess the food needs to be met in a specific country as far as food supply and related investments are concerned. It worked out a model for a national food plan, and plans were attempted by Bangladesh, Haiti, Honduras, Senegal, Sudan, and Upper Volta. Any researcher interested in the history of food production and consumption in those countries will find a baseline in these files. In addition, the Group commissioned a report on water resources development in the Narmada River basin of India for irrigation agriculture, and the report is in the files.
Consultative Group on Food Production and Investment in Developing Countries