- Published on Thursday, 23 October 2014 17:48
Press Statement from the Popular Movements
October 27th, 28th, and 29th
In conjunction with the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace and the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences, and with the express support of Pope Francis, a variety of movements representing those who are most disadvantaged and most excluded from society are taking the lead in organising the World Meeting of Popular Movements, which will be held in Rome from October 27th to 29th.
We are very glad of this unique occasion to give visibility to the excluded and to let their voices be heard within the Vatican itself. We are deeply grateful to Pope Francis for this opportunity, which is one more demonstration of his constant accompaniment and closeness - not only to those of us who suffer injustice but also to those among us who are uniting to struggle against it.
- Published on Thursday, 23 October 2014 15:24
LVC South Asia
(Sri Lanka, Colombo, October 16, 2014) During World Food Week, the Movement of National Land and Agricultural Reform (MONLAR) held an island-wide Seed Caravan for Food Sovereignty. This campaign stems from the need to address core issues related to the food system in Sri Lanka around the themes of Justice, Equality and Regeneration. More than 50 farmers, women, plantation workers, fisheries and other civil society organizations based across the country participated. The journey of the caravans started from Murukundi in the Northern province in the island and concluded in Colombo after covering a total 25 cities.
Fisheries, labors and plantation workers join hands with Farmers and consumers for food sovereignty in Sri Lanka.
Around 600 farmers, fisheries, labors and plantation workers marched in Colombo on the World Food Day (16th of October) to present their demands to the Government for ensuring food sovereignty of the people. This march was the culmination of the Seed and Food Sovereignty Caravan 2014 which traveled across the country for 6 days.
- Published on Tuesday, 21 October 2014 20:58
(Zimbabwe, Masvingo, Otober 20, 2014) Food sovereignty as a concept is under debate by various actors in the academia, activists and governments. The focus has been on its meaning and implications, some of which is still contested by some actors. This year a “Critical Dialogue on Food Sovereignty” was held at the Hague in January, attended by various actors to debate this important concept. It’s various outcomes have been published recently by the Journal of Peasant Studies (JPS), of which some of the articles are freely available (http://www.tandfonline.com/loi/toc/fjps20/41/6) though for a short time.
According to Elizabeth Mpofu in her opening speech (Via Campesina at the colloquium “Food Sovereignty: a critical dialogue”) at The Hague, she said that “We are not trying to create the perfect definition, for a dictionary or for a history book but we are trying to build a movement to change the food system and the world”. This has been the case with farmers at Shashe, where food sovereignty, it various pillars, is alive. The farmers have over the years developed ways to make food sovereignty a reality. These farmers produce adequate food for own consumption, the surplus traded locally, value addition processes are underway and are trying to remove the chains of dependence on agro-inputs by adopting agroecology.
- Published on Tuesday, 21 October 2014 20:42
(Zimbabwe, Masvingo, October 20, 2014) Zimbabwe Small Organic Farmers Forum (ZIMSOFF) represents smallholder farmers practicing organic agriculture in Zimbabwe, a practice promoted through participatory ecological land use planning and management, and encourages value addition to uplift the welfare of members. The organization has about 19,000 smallholder farmers organized in four clusters, namely the western, eastern, northern and central. These clusters are made up of 64 Smallholder Farmer Organizations (SFOs) which nurture dynamic alliances. Shashe SFO, where the Agroecology School is located, is under the central cluster. Shashe farmers are beneficiaries of the Fast Track Land Reform Programme implemented by the Government of Zimbabwe in 2000. They are part of the 380 official land beneficiaries resettled in 2000 at the Shashe block of farms, which covers about 15,020 hectares. Of this area, about 23% was allocated for residential and arable purposes, the rest is grazing. The area is generally dry, receiving about 400mm of annual rainfall, and has deep soils (sandy loams, red clays and a mixture of the two). It was mainly used for ranching by the former white farmers. The new farmers have broadened the land use as they are now producing both crops and livestock
At Shashe farmers employ various agroecological practices to ensure food sovereignty, mitigate climate change effects and reduce dependence on bought-in agro-inputs thus retaining farm income within the family’s purse. These practices include the use of organic manure, mulching, minimum tillage, multiple cropping, exchange and use of traditional seeds and open pollinated varieties, among others.