La Vía Campesina’s position on the International Year of Family Farming - 2014

Press Release - La Vía Campesina

A space for the promotion of concrete policies on peasant family farming

b_350_0_16777215_00___images_LOGO_AIAF.png(Harare, 25 June 2014) La Vía Campesina defines participation in the International Year of Family Farming, propelled by the UN in 2014, as the creation of a space for discussion and collective action to push Food Sovereignty that has peasants and small farmers as a basis. All throughout the world they continue to grow and distribute healthy, self-produced food in their towns, in stark contrast to the commercial food industry, whose priorities are profit and speculation and whose strategy is to make agriculture increasingly dependent on agro-toxics, increasing their profits through the sale of herbicides, whilst damaging and contaminating natural resources.

We have witnessed a profound food crisis, which has brought attention to peasant based food production and the eradication of hunger within the UN’s agenda. The UN has recognised the crucial role that male and female peasants play in this arduous task.

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In the Year of Family Farming: Food Sovereignty is the Framework for Family Farm Resilience

Press release of La Via Campesina North America

b_350_0_16777215_00___images_stories_sustainableagriculture_colline_du_chene.jpg(Quevec city, April 9, 2014)- Family farmers Joan Brady (National Farmers Union of Canada), Ben Burkett (National Family Farm Coalition) and Maxime Laplante (Union paysanne) represented the voices of women, minority, and smaller scale farmers in the U.S. and Canada on April 7th and 8th at the North American Dialogue on Family Farming in Quebec City. All three organizations are members of the world’s largest small and medium-scale farmer and agricultural worker movement, La Via Campesina, which has members in over 70 countries, including seven in North America.

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Evenstad Declaration : Seven measures for strengthening peasant family farming!

(Evenstad, 4 March 2014 ) The peasants gathered together in Norway for the Annual General Assembly of European Coordination Via Campesina and their allies present Seven measures for strengthening peasant family farming, now!

At present, peasant family farming is and remains the most widespread model to produce food in Europe and the world.

For several decades now European farmers have faced a “sink or swim” situation. Costly investments and equipment and increasing farm size have dragged producers into a never-ending downward spiral. Forced “modernisation” is no longer a way to gain access to an improved way of life and comfort, but an end in itself and an obligation. Debts weigh heavily on all, and the most vulnerable are left by the wayside. Food has become just another commodity, and peasants just producers of raw materials. All control has been wrested from their grasp.

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La Via Campesina says small-scale Family Farming Supports Life

b_350_0_16777215_00___images_stories_sustainableagriculture_20130512familyfarminscaled.JPGTo kick off the 2014 International Year of Family Farming the European Commission (EU) recently organized a conference in Brussels. La Via Campesina (LVC) sent men and women farmer leaders from India, Mozambique, Nicaragua, Argentina, the US, Mali, Morocco, Italy, France, Croatia, Romania, Spain and Norway. LVC leaders defended our vision of a peasant- based family farming model and highlighted its vital importance to the European and global economy and its crucial social and environmental benefits. LVC’s vision of family farming is based on agroecological principles and labor intensiveness – and not capital. Our family farms are able to adapt to the infinite diversity of natural, social and economic conditions. Peasant–based, agroecological, small-scale family farms guarantee security and diversity of food for the majority of the people across the globe. They are living examples of social, economic and ecological sustainability. Our model of agriculture provides chemical-free food for local consumption and not for export - to support life, and not speculation

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