Posted: October 23, 2012 at 9:22 pm
By Eric Holt-Giménez, Ph.D., Social Scientist and Executive Director of Food
First/Institute for Food and Development Policy. The real causes of the 2008 and 2011 food price crises were numerous, but the fact that our global agricultural system is dominated by corporations, free trade, and speculation was neglected by most media outlets.
By Eric Holt-Giménez, Ph.D., Social Scientist and Executive Director of Food First/Institute for Food and Development Policy.The food and financial crises of 2008 ignited a massive round of “land grabbing” in the Global South, with foreign agribusinesses leasing and buying large tracts of land to produce both food and fuel crops for export.
By Eric Holt-Giménez, Ph.D., Social Scientist and Executive Director of Food
First/Institute for Food and Development Policy.
Sustainable Agriculture CAN feed the world, and it can protect the planet and end hunger and poverty.
“The report therefore calls States for a fundamental shift towards agro-ecology as a way for countries to feed themselves while addressing climate and poverty challenges.”
“We, more than 500 representatives from more than 80 countries, of organizations of peasants/family farmers, artisanal fisherfolk, indigenous peoples, landless peoples, rural workers, migrants, pastoralists, forest communities, women, youth, consumers and environmental and urban movements have gathered together in the village of Nyéléni in Sélingué, Mali to strengthen a global movement for food sovereignty…”
An accessible description of what food sovereignty is, who is affected, and why it is more important than ever.
Short reflection on food sovereignty by Werner Fuchs, Lutheran pastor and translator, member of the CONSEA (National Council for Food Security of Brazil).
One-page reflection on food sovereignty by Roberto Malvezzi, Pastoral Land Commission (Brazil).
Watch the trailer to Foodopoly, the film and book from Wenonah Hauter of Food and Water Watch.
Taken from a presentation at the International Conference on Global Land Grabbing, Eric Holt-Gimenez of Food First and Annie Shattuck and Yi Wang explain how land grabs are affecting urban areas in the Global North, in addition to the rural land grabs in the Global South. This shared, universal threat requires immediate action and global solidarity
Eric Holt-Gimenez, Annie Shattuck, and Yi Wang explain how food retail corporations are behind the urban and northern land grab in this Food First backgrounder.
From The Applied Research Center, “The Color of Food” reveals that racism and exploitation that exist in our food system and suggests ways to transform our food system into a vehicle of justice.
“Youth and Food Justice: Lessons from the Civil Rights Movement,” by Anim Steel Food First Backgrounder, 2010.Tags: Defense of Mother Earth, Food Sovereignty, Land/Resource Grabs, Local Food & Farming
Posted: October 23, 2012 at 9:10 pm
CALL TO ACTION
1. With Farmworkers! Stand in solidarity with farm workers and the Coalition of Immokalee Workers and send a supermarket postcard or manager’s letter
2. With Family Farmers! Push for transparency in the Trans-Pacific Partnership to make sure family farmers and people who eat are not hurt by this secretly negotiated international trade agreement.
3. With Food Workers! Become an ally of employees behind the kitchen door. Request a raise to the tipped minimum wage of $2.13 an hour for restaurant workers.
4. With Hungry People and the Environment! We’re burning our crops as fuel rather than using land to grow food. Tell the Obama Administration to waive the mandate for corn ethanol.
A. The Alliance’s Mother Earth Rights/Defense of the Commons Team is working to take action for seed sovereignty. Find out more about the Pesticide Action Network North America’s efforts to fight against USDA approval of genetically modified corn and soy seeds. We also want to invite groups to connect their local actions on World Food Day to seed sovereignty, whether it’s challenging corporate control of seeds or doing seed sharing in your community!
B. The Land and Resource Grabs Team is monitoring land struggles. In Honduras, over 40 peasants in the Lower Aguan region have been killed in the past year because they are refusing to give up their land to giant plantations growing African palm oil to produce agro-fuel. Stand with these Honduran peasants. And in Vallecito, Honduras, the Garifunas are struggling to recover their ancestral land, so raise your voice in solidarity with them.
C. Tell Land O Fakes (Lakes) to pay a fair price to its own member dairy farmers and to stop pushing GM. Download the postcard.Tags: Food Sovereignty, Labor & Trade, Land/Resource Grabs
Posted: October 23, 2012 at 9:07 pm
Call to Action
The following Call to Action is adapted from the Call to Action to End the Food Crisis issued by the US Working Group on the Food Crisis in 2008 and endorsed by several thousand organizations and individuals. It is included here as a springboard for future action of the Alliance, with the understanding that it will evolve to reflect new ideas, voices, and perspectives as the Alliance develops.
We call on people across the United States to use our political power and actions to fight poverty by rebuilding local food economies, and specifically for food system changes that:
1) Stabilize prices for farmers and consumers locally, nationally and globally by:
- Ending rampant financial speculation in food;
- Establishing and strengthening publicly-owned domestic, regional, and international strategic food reserves;
- Suspending international trade and investments in industrial-scale biofuels (a.k.a. agrofuels);
- Transforming corporate-oriented food aid;
- Ensuring fair prices to farmers, fishers, pastoralists and other food providers;
- Establishing equitable regional and global trade arrangements that enable countries, communities, and all farmers, fishers, pastoralists and other food providers to meet food and livelihood needs.
2) Balance power in the food system by:
- Reducing the political influence of agrifood corporations on public policy, e.g., by strengthening antitrust enforcement on those corporations and reducing their unregulated market power;
- Convening multi-stakeholder, representative food policy councils at state and local levels.
3) Make agriculture environmentally sustainable by:
- Supporting family farms’ transition to agroecological practices through incentives, purchasing and procurement;
- Halting expansion of government-supported agrofuels (biofuels) and transgenic seeds programs, mandates, and tax incentives and other subsidies
- Directing state and national farm policy, R&D, education and investment toward agroecological farming and sustainable food businesses.
4) Guarantee the right to healthy food by building local and regional food systems and fostering social, ecological and economic justice by:
- Calling on the US to join the community of nations to support the human right to food;
- Supporting domestic food production and independent, community-based food cooperatives and businesses in the United States and around the world;
- Establishing living wages, so that everyone can afford healthy food;
- Implementing full workers’ rights for farm workers and other food system workers;
- Implementing agrarian reform that takes land out of the hands of large corporations and puts it in the hands of communities for local food production.
- Strengthening the social safety net for low-income people across the US;
- Creating a solidarity economy that puts people before corporate profit in the US and around the world.
Through food sovereignty, the Earth can feed all living things.Tags: Corporations & Policies, Defense of Mother Earth, Food Sovereignty, Immigrants, Indigenous Sovereignty, Labor & Trade, Land/Resource Grabs, Local Food & Farming, Popular Education
Posted: October 16, 2012 at 6:05 pm
Fighting Against Land and Resource Grabs for Comprehensive Land Reform
Immigrant Rights and Trade
Read the USFSA’s Immigration Policy Principles for Food Sovereignty
Resources on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)
On April 10 at 1 pm ET, the USFSA will host a learning call about the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership, which is being called NAFTA for the Pacific, and its implications for farmers and immigration. If you want to join the call, email email@example.com for the call information.
by John Kinsman, March 12, 2012
See updates, resources & actions on the Defense of Mother Earth page
Addressing Racism and Creating Leadership Structures that Reflect Frontline Communities
As we all know, the food system in the U.S. is dysfunctional and unjust. Our own movement reflects many of these contradictions and divides – this is why the Assembly was so important and why members of the USFSA recommitted to work together to ensure that as social justice advocates, we are conscious of issues of privilege and oppression in our work together. We will learn more together about issues of race and racism, and will work together to create a leadership structure that reflects the grassroots base-building, frontline communities that are most impacted by injustices in the food system.
Throughout the Assembly, participants reaffirmed the value of a US Food Sovereignty Alliance as a space for grassroots and national groups to build their power together in the food system and to provide solidarity to each other’s struggles, particularly in the face of corporate domination. We will continue to look for opportunities to take action in solidarity with each other.