Research Topic

Sustainability in Mountain Food Systems: Tackling Climate Change and Agrobiodiversity Loss

About this Research Topic

Achieving food and nutrition security still remains a big global challenge. The 2020 report ‘The State of Food and Nutrition in the World’ revealed that nearly 700 million people are undernourished in the world. If recent trends continue, the number of undernourished people would surpass 840 million by 2030. The report also reveals that in 2019, 21.3% of children under 5 years of age were stunted, 6.9% wasted and 5.6 % overweight. These statistics clearly show that countries, particularly developing countries, need to intensify their efforts to eradicate hunger and achieve sustainable food and nutrition security.

Around the globe, mountain regions are more vulnerable to food and nutrition insecurity due to inadequate accessibility, fragility, topographical constraints, high transaction and transportation costs, demographic changes, higher impacts of climate change, and declining agrobiodiversity. In the Hindu-Kush Himalayas, for example, around one-third of the population is food insecure and almost half is facing malnutrition with more severe impacts on women and children. Other mountain regions are also facing the issue of a high prevalence of food and nutrition insecurity.

In mountain regions, two challenges out of the many – climate change and agrobiodiversity loss – are the most critical to tackle for achieving sustainability in their food systems. In the last couple of decades, mountains faced increased incidences of climate induced events and hazards such as changes in temperature and precipitation patterns, frequent floods, and prolonged droughts and landslides that have adversely impacted the food systems. Similarly, declining agrobiodiversity is impacting people’s dietary diversity and the overall resilience of their food systems. Farmers are gradually shifting from diverse agricultural systems to a narrow range of crops and livestock. This shift has resulted in the increased use of chemical inputs and non-renewable energy, leading to a rise in emissions of greenhouse gases. High quality and reliable research can play a very vital role in the development of policies and plans for addressing the issues of climate change, agrobiodiversity loss, and greenhouse emissions in mountain food systems.

This Research Topic aims to further enhance the scientific knowledge and evidence on the interconnectivities of climate change, agrobiodiversity loss and greenhouse gas emissions, and their impacts on the sustainability of mountain food systems. The collection also aims to gather scientific evidence of solutions to tackle these challenges. Solutions may span but are not limited to:

• Climate services
• Climate-smart agriculture
• Sustainable agricultural production and consumption patterns
• Resilient food value chains
• Use of renewable energy in mountain food systems
• Revival of future smart crops (previously called neglected and underutilized crops) and native livestock
• Sustainable use of pastures and rangelands
• Integration of agricultural and non-agricultural solutions for better mountain food systems

This article collection welcomes good quality manuscripts from all mountain regions of the world. We are highly interested in original research, however, we also welcome review and conceptual articles.


Keywords: Climate change, agrobiodiversity loss, food systems, climate services, climate smart agriculture, resilient food value chains, future smart crops, native livestock, pastures/rangelands


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

Achieving food and nutrition security still remains a big global challenge. The 2020 report ‘The State of Food and Nutrition in the World’ revealed that nearly 700 million people are undernourished in the world. If recent trends continue, the number of undernourished people would surpass 840 million by 2030. The report also reveals that in 2019, 21.3% of children under 5 years of age were stunted, 6.9% wasted and 5.6 % overweight. These statistics clearly show that countries, particularly developing countries, need to intensify their efforts to eradicate hunger and achieve sustainable food and nutrition security.

Around the globe, mountain regions are more vulnerable to food and nutrition insecurity due to inadequate accessibility, fragility, topographical constraints, high transaction and transportation costs, demographic changes, higher impacts of climate change, and declining agrobiodiversity. In the Hindu-Kush Himalayas, for example, around one-third of the population is food insecure and almost half is facing malnutrition with more severe impacts on women and children. Other mountain regions are also facing the issue of a high prevalence of food and nutrition insecurity.

In mountain regions, two challenges out of the many – climate change and agrobiodiversity loss – are the most critical to tackle for achieving sustainability in their food systems. In the last couple of decades, mountains faced increased incidences of climate induced events and hazards such as changes in temperature and precipitation patterns, frequent floods, and prolonged droughts and landslides that have adversely impacted the food systems. Similarly, declining agrobiodiversity is impacting people’s dietary diversity and the overall resilience of their food systems. Farmers are gradually shifting from diverse agricultural systems to a narrow range of crops and livestock. This shift has resulted in the increased use of chemical inputs and non-renewable energy, leading to a rise in emissions of greenhouse gases. High quality and reliable research can play a very vital role in the development of policies and plans for addressing the issues of climate change, agrobiodiversity loss, and greenhouse emissions in mountain food systems.

This Research Topic aims to further enhance the scientific knowledge and evidence on the interconnectivities of climate change, agrobiodiversity loss and greenhouse gas emissions, and their impacts on the sustainability of mountain food systems. The collection also aims to gather scientific evidence of solutions to tackle these challenges. Solutions may span but are not limited to:

• Climate services
• Climate-smart agriculture
• Sustainable agricultural production and consumption patterns
• Resilient food value chains
• Use of renewable energy in mountain food systems
• Revival of future smart crops (previously called neglected and underutilized crops) and native livestock
• Sustainable use of pastures and rangelands
• Integration of agricultural and non-agricultural solutions for better mountain food systems

This article collection welcomes good quality manuscripts from all mountain regions of the world. We are highly interested in original research, however, we also welcome review and conceptual articles.


Keywords: Climate change, agrobiodiversity loss, food systems, climate services, climate smart agriculture, resilient food value chains, future smart crops, native livestock, pastures/rangelands


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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Submission Deadlines

06 August 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

06 August 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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