- Published on Wednesday, 16 November 2011 11:21
- Published on Thursday, 03 November 2011 11:31
CALL TO MASS ACTION AND MOBILIZATION
5th December 2011, Durban, South Africa
We call on all farmers’ movements and organizations, rural workers, landless people and all the food sovereignty movement to join us for an international day of mass action on the 5th of December 2011, during the COP 17 civil society mobilization in Durban, South Africa.
Humanity is confronted with a food, economic and ecological crisis that is rooted in the neoliberal capitalist system of production, distribution and consumption. These multiple crises highlight the limits of neoliberal capitalist production. Today transnational corporations and governments are presenting false solutions to climate change, hijacking the United Nations Conference of Parties (COP17) also referred to as the Conference of Polluters, to be held in Durban South Africa.
These corporate elites, western governments and the neo liberal capitalist system that is responsible for generating the crisis are presenting us with false solutions. The countries of the South and Africa in particular will be hard hit by climate change. Scientists indicate that the African continent is expected to be drier and would become warmer more quickly than other regions of the planet, despite the fact that Africa has contributed the least to global warming. This will hugely impact on agriculture, which is an important livelihood source across Africa. There will be yield losses of the major staple foods of the continent like maize, sorghum, millet, cassava etc. due to temperature rises.
While UPOV celebrates its 50 years, farmers protest against an institution in the service of the seed industry
- Published on Tuesday, 01 November 2011 10:04
Press release – European Coordination Via Campesina (ECVC) and Uniterre - Geneva – Thursday 20 October 2011
Between noon and 2 p.m. on October 20, more than one hundred sustainable family farmers, members of various associations and committed citizens met across from the International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants (UPOV), to protest on the occasion of the fiftieth birthday of the institution. Their watchword was “For the immediate recognition of the right of farmers to resow and freely exchange their seeds, and to protect them from biopiracy and contamination from patented genes. No to the stranglehold of seed multinationals, the New Plant Variety Certificate of 1991 and any form of patent on plants, parts of plants, their genes, or production methods.”
A tree was planted in front of the institution to symbolize the fact that farmers now have observer status there. They showed their determination through the symbolic performance of the “hoe kata”. Then packets of “illegal” seeds were distributed and their contents were sowed in the vicinity to illustrate the nature of the farmers’ struggle. Those who accept such seeds are currently considered receivers of stolen goods. Pierre Vanek and Philippe Sauvin (of the solidaritéS party) and Anne Mahrer (of the Vert party), candidates for the Swiss federal elections, are among those who accepted the packets.