Media releases

In this section you can find GRAIN media releases.

Turono Karuturi (“Bye-bye Karuturi” in Anuak)

Anywaa Survival Organisation and GRAIN | 22 September 2017 | Media releases, Land

Land activists around the world celebrated the news of the collapse of one of the world’s biggest land grabs: the Indian company Karuturi Global Ltd’s 300,000 hectare farmland deal in Ethiopia. CEO Sai Ramakrishna Karuturi claimed he would bring food security to the horn of Africa while boasting he would soon join the ranks of the world’s biggest food producers.

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Four years after the first militant uprooting of Golden Rice, waves of protest mobilisations stir anew in the Philippines and Bangladesh against its commercialisation, while debate rages on in Indonesia, India and other Asian countries where Golden Rice is planned for commercial release.

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A new report exposes the devastating consequences of land grabs for indigenous communities in Preah Vihear province, in northern Cambodia. The report reveals how Chinese companies, attracted by the Cambodian government to invest in local agro-industry, have been violating the fundamental rights of communities and destroying livelihoods and ecosystems over the past six years. The report is a joint collaboration between Community Network in Action (CNA), Ponlok Khmer, GRAIN, Cambodia Indigenous Youth Association (CIYA), and the Asia Indigenous Peoples Pact (AIPP).

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The struggle to resolve conflicts around land deals continues. Yesterday it was at Socfin’s general assembly in Luxembourg, and today it was at Bolloré’s in Paris.

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While energy companies are the most frequent targets of climate activism, a new report by GRAIN shows that large food corporations—especially in the meat and dairy sector—are huge contributors to global climate change. According to the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation, meat production alone now generates more greenhouse gas emissions than all the world’s transport combined. In a new report, GRAIN outlines the contributions of industrial meat and dairy to global climate change, arguing that reducing their production and consumption is one of the most important actions we can take to address the climate crisis now.  

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Some of the world's largest food companies are rolling out a programme called Grow, promising to apply “market-based solutions” to poverty, food insecurity and climate change. Under a logic of “public-private partnership”, the companies participating in Grow are fostering close ties with governments in order to increase their control over markets and supply chains. While claiming to promote food security and benefit small farmers, Grow’s focus on a few high-value commodities—like potatoes, maize, coffee, tea and palm oil—exposes the programme’s real objective: to expand the production of a handful of commodities to profit a handful of corporations. The impacts on communities, biodiversity, nutrition and the climate are potentially disastrous.

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Over the past few days, Feronia Inc., a Canadian-based company majority-owned by European and US development banks, has been pressuring local communities to sign a memorandum of understanding (MOU) that would endorse the company’s continued operation and expansion of oil palm plantations within their territories. Despite severe pressure and intimidation, the communities have rejected the MOU and are appealing for international support to demand that Feronia respect their decision.

 

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Court rules that Brazilian businessman who sold lands to TIAA-CREF acquired lands illegally

Rede Social de Justiça e Direitos Humanos, GRAIN, Inter Pares, Solidarity Sweden-Latin America, FIAN and National Family Farm Coalition | 20 July 2016 | Media releases, Land

A Brazilian businessman involved in the acquisition of farmland by US, Canadian, German and Swedish pension funds could face criminal charges for land grabbing. The Agrarian Prosecutor for the Court of the Brazilian state of Piauí has issued an order for the cancellation of 124,400 ha of lands illegally acquired by businessman Euclides De Carli. The decision was issued on 5 July 2016, by state prosecutor Francisco Santiago, citing land grabbing (“grilagem”) and the illegal use of lands assigned to agrarian reform. The prosecution is now considering filing criminal charges.

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In 2015, the planet reached “alarming” and “unprecedented” rates of climate change, according to the United Nations—and 2016 is set to be another record-breaking year. Severe droughts, for example, triggered devastating food and water shortages in India, the Pacific and Eastern and Southern Africa. But another factor, notes the organisation GRAIN, is amplifying both climate change and its impacts: the persistent and deepening scourge of land grabbing.

Building on 2008 research that helped put land grabbing in the global spotlight, GRAIN’s new dataset documents nearly 500 current land grab deals across the globe. The cases span 78 countries, around US$94 billion in farmland investments and over 30 million hectares (an area roughly the size of Finland).

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On Friday 3 June, African citizens, organisations and unions will disrupt the shareholder meeting of the Bolloré group at its headquarters in Puteaux, just outside of Paris, France. The protestors represent a movement composed of thousands of farmers who have been displaced from their lands by industrial oil palm and rubber plantations. Since Wednesday, this movement has also been occupying factories and plantations in Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Liberia and Sierra Leone.  

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