- Published on Friday, 18 December 2015 13:44
(Nairobi, December 17, 2015) As the wave of big Transnational Corporations (TNCs) sweeps across the global in search of new markets and dominance, small family farmers in the developed countries are being trampled. Agricultural markets are flooded by cheap imports from other developed countries. In the US this has forced thousands of family farmers to change land uses or sell to the government. The government agricultural policies support large farms most of which are part of TNCs value chains. Land concentration is promoted in the US and EU through the biased farm support schemes. Farm support is tied to the size of the farm- is given on per hectare or acre basis. This means large farms receive much more than small farms.
According to Ben Burkett, president of National Family Farm Coalition, agricultural imports from New Zealand (lamb and powdered milk), Brazil (soy beans) and other countries are devastating the rural areas and also lower prices in US. Despite the US support to its farmers, those affected by imports have to prove their case before getting ‘crop subsidy transition assistance’. Not all farmers are able to do so. Some end up selling their land to the government. This land is converted into conservation reserves.
- Published on Friday, 18 December 2015 11:19
(Nairobi, December 16, 2015) The WTO, an organisation more powerful than national governments and UN institutions and a destroyer of agriculture has been promoting a globalisation for Transnational Corporations (TNCs) and big powers. Under this organisation, no farmer can be a winner. Winners are only TNCs that control world trade. For them production is not for consumption but for trade to make profits. Trade also is about exploiting the poor countries by rich countries. La Via Campesina together with other social movements have led and continue the struggle against this economic injustice.
“To stop them”, says Shushi Okazaki “the role of La Via Campesina is increasingly important. Japan Family Farmers movement, Nouminren, together with La Via Campesina will build a fair and just society based on sovereignty by breaking down a trade system of multinationals: WTO, Trans-Pacific Partnerships (TPP) and Free Trade Agreements (FTA)s. TPP is the worst-ever treaty to completely destroy Japan’s agriculture that has already suffered a lot under WTO.”
- Published on Thursday, 17 December 2015 23:37
The new edition of the Nyéléni Newsletter is now online!
(Harare, December 17, 2015) About 75 percent of the world’s poor live in rural areas in developing countries. Most survive on subsistence farming, artisanal fisheries and/or nomadic herding and many are landless, working as seasonal labour on farms, plantations, in fisheries and industry. Click here to download the English edition.
Their daily food needs are met primarily through local production, foraging, hunting and fishing - often by women - on small farms, common grazing lands and in woods, forests, streams, rivers and lakes.
- Published on Thursday, 17 December 2015 20:32
"We are the main victims of climate change—victims of an unjust system that is cruel, patriarchal and unsupportive. We will not let people wearing suits and ties to decide on our lives and the fate of the earth. Nature can live without us, but we will not survive without nature.”
These were some of the words of La Via Campesina’s mistica at the opening ceremony of People’s Climate Summit, a Global Village of Alternatives in Food and Agriculture held at Montreuil, parallel to COP21, in Paris. Surrounded by products from peasant agriculture and stalls from farmers of lConfédération Paysanne, a French member organization of La Via Campesina, the movement’s international delegation denounced false solutions to the climate crises. The world needs peasant and people’s voices to be heard, just as the world needs climate justice.
In Paris, at the 21st Conference of the Parties (COP21), where representatives of corporations negotiated “false solutions” for climate change, La Via Campesina made it clear that Food Sovereignty and peasant agriculture are the real solutions to global climate crisis, by feeding the world and cooling the earth. While large-scale agricultural production uses 70 percent of the world agricultural resources to produce only 30 percent of the global food supply, peasant-based food systems provide 70 percent of global food supply while using only 30 percent of agricultural resources.