Only the soil can free us

Joeva Rock, Africa is a country | 29 November 2018 | food sovereignty | Burkina Faso

Why agricultural change is political change. Take the case of farmers in Burkina Faso.


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On 24 July 2018, Focus on the Global South, ETC Group, and the Chulalongkorn University Research Institute (CUSRI) organized a forum in Bangkok on corporate concentration in agriculture and food, and its implications on food sovereignty in South East Asia. The forum brought speakers from a number of national, regional and international organisations, and the audience of around 60 individuals comprised representatives from social movements, civil society organisations, academia, and the general public.

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We feed the world

Jyoti Fernandez | 14 October 2018 | food sovereignty, laws & policies, actions | United Kingdom

Great talk by Jyoti Fernandez of the Landworkers Alliance on the opening night of the We Feed the World exhibition reminding us of the role we all can all play in standing up for a fairer food and farming system.

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Bringing farming back to nature

Daniel Moss and Mark Bittman | 27 June 2018 | technologies, food sovereignty, seeds & biodiversity

Farming the land as if nature doesn’t matter has been the model for much of the Western world’s food production system for at least the past 75 years. The results haven’t been pretty: depleted soil, chemically fouled waters, true family farms all but eliminated, a worsening of public health and more. But an approach that combines innovation and tradition has emerged, one that could transform the way we grow food. It’s called agroecology, and it places ecological science at the center of agriculture. It’s a scrappy movement that’s taking off globally.

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Thirty-three years ago today, the horrendous Bhopal gas tragedy at the Union Carbide pesticide plant in India immediately killed 3,000 people and 15,000 more subsequently.  Survivors, exposed to the deadly gas and their children, continue to suffer from the world’s worst industrial disaster. Thousands of tons of hazardous wastes remain buried underground and the area remains contaminated. Meanwhile, Union Carbide, which became a subsidiary of Dow-Chemical Co. in 2001, has yet to fully account for the tragedy.

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Farming for a small planet

Frances Moore Lappé | 12 January 2018 | corporations, climate crisis, food sovereignty

An excellent, and well documented, summary article by Frances Moore Lappé explaining why the industrial food system can't feed the world, and agroecology can.

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Dalit women : we’re fighting RCEP | 09 November 2017 | food sovereignty | India

Fatima Burnad is a member of the Asia Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development (APWLD) and she advocates for women farmers’ rights. She and other Dalit women in India are concerned that Dalit women will be the most affected by RCEP and that land grabbing for corporate agriculture will impact food sovereignty, rights over land and seed preservation. But they will resist.


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The Sustainable Food Trust today publishes summary proceedings of an international conference which brought together leading experts to establish the true cost of food in the United States (US). The US was one of the first countries to intensify food production and as a result was also one of the first to suffer from the negative impacts.


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For over half a century the struggle against poverty has been a focus of global rhetoric. Rarely, however, do people ask the most important question: Who is going to fight poverty? The World Bank and many governments have their answer: outside experts, donors and corporations will alleviate poverty. This perspective more or less reduces the struggle against poverty to an investment programme. Civil society organisations and social movements, in contrast, have a very different answer. In their view, the poor need to free themselves from poverty. This will require broadening their scope for action and strengthening their rights, and involves a programme of empowerment aimed at both more encompassing as well as piecemeal shifts in the balance of power. The poor are not needy recipients of aid; they only have their hands bound.

This is where the concept of agroecology, the focus of this brochure, plays in.

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Without seeds, there is no agriculture. Since the beginning of farming, over 10,000 years ago, farmers have selected the best seeds from their harvests to plant in the next season, to exchange, or to sell informally. In this way they select the plants, from the varieties they have, that really correspond to their needs and to the usual diet of the local population. Owing to this selection, these varieties evolve over the years to adapt to the soil in which they grow and to climate changes. These practices are thus conducive to constant improvement and diversification of the biodiversity cultivated.

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