The paradigm of an urban Europe that gets its food from the southern countries has been one of the main victims of the current financial crisis that hits the big powers of industrial capitalism.
This was one of the reflections made by Javier Sanchez of La Via Campesina Europe. He joined the delegation of the international peasant organization that has been working on the drafting of the Guidelines on land tenure at the FAO’s headquarters.
The Spanish farmer talked about the existence of communal lands in several regions of Europe and their social and food significance, the aging of the continent’s population, especially in the rural areas -worsened by the crisis- and the need for food sovereignty.
The expansion of the European Union’s borders meant the beginning of an intense race of the countries leading the coalition over the control of cultivable lands and markets in those countries. This made the cost of living rise, while incomes froze. “Many farmers and citizens of those countries saw how the expectations to become part of ‘Europe’ became a great disappointment, and they ended up migrating to countries like Spain, France, Germany or Italy, where they are considered second-class citizens”.
Javier is a member of the Coordination of Cattle Farmers Organizations (COAG) in Spain.
Photo: Radio Mundo Real
(2011) Radio Mundo Real