Main Issues

The International Treaty of Seed - FAO refuses to collaborate in biopiracy: INRA and CIRAD must do the same!

2017-02-10 Divseek.pngThe ITPGRFA (1) has decided to withdraw from its partnership with DivSeek, a consortium of agricultural research centers that organizes biopiracy at global level. This is the first victory of Via Campesina, which in 2014 denounced this planning of the flight of all the seeds of the world, before being supported in 2015 by many "southern" governments and NGOs.  

DivSeek was set up with money from the World Bank to carry out the genetic sequencing of all the seeds held in the genebanks of the various countries of the planet.

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UAWC condemns the killing of a Palestinian farmer, Suleiman Hammad

2017-02-09-UAWC Farmer Killed.pngAppeal to the world's free people

The Union of Agricultural Work committees (UAWC) and its agricultural committees strongly condemn the murder of the Palestinian farmer, Suleiman Hammad, 85 years old, after an Israeli settler on Wednesday, 8th February, 2017 had run over him on the 60 bypass road near Al-Khader village, southern Bethlehem while he is going to his land.

The brutal killing of Suleiman Hammad is part of the Israeli systematic violation of the right to life which is one of the most basic human rights to all people. This killing came after just days of the Israeli approval of law to legalize West Bank settlement spots that is built unlawfully on Palestinian land classified as area "C" according to Oslo agreement which will lead to the theft of more Palestinian land.

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Food Sovereignty within a new Agricultural Policy

b_350_0_16777215_00_images_2017-02-09-genevieve_intervention2-550x309.jpg(Brussels, February 7, 2017) Hosted by the European United Left/Nordic Green Left, the hearing “Food Sovereignty within a new Agricultural Policy” in the EU Parliament this morning in Brussels moved discussions regarding the coming reform of the CAP beyond the mere distribution of public subsidies and highlighted the importance of food sovereignty and another model of agriculture.

The European Coordination Via Campesina was there with Isabel Vilalba Seivane (Secretary General, SLG Sindicato Labrego Galego – Galician Farmers Union), Genevieve Savigny (Coordination Committee ECVC) and Mikel Hirribaren (Secretary General, Confédération Paysanne)

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Op Ed: Free Trade, Rural Canada and How to keep Canada from being Trumped

b_350_0_16777215_00_images_2015-10-15_NFU.pngOver the decades since the Canada-US Free Trade Agreement (FTA) and later, NAFTA, was signed, Canadian agriculture has undergone a significant shift. There was once a multitude of diverse local and regional economic drivers, but now we have a “one size fits all” export-driven, low-priced commodity production model. Farm capital needs have sky-rocketed as illustrated by the massive $90 billion farm debt. Off-farm investors control more and more of Canada’s farmland. Production – per farm, per acre and per worker -- continues to go up. And that production became increasingly export and transport dependent as NAFTA-driven deregulation accelerated consolidation and transnational ownership of handling and processing facilities. Farmer numbers are ominously declining, yet governments, and most farm commodity groups and agri-business corporations remain euphoric over each signed trade agreement and growing exports.

Read more: Op Ed: Free Trade, Rural Canada and How to keep...

Milk Crisis: Deregulation not in the interest of producers and consumers

b_350_0_16777215_00_images_2017-01-23-Milk_Crisis.jpgThe sector's deregulatory policy is tailor-made for large-scale distribution and the dairy industry and, it does not serve the interests of producers and consumers.

Brussels, January 23, 2017

Today, European milk producers (ECVC and the European Milk Board - EMB) met again in Brussels for a symbolic action on the occasion of the EU Agriculture and Fisheries Council meeting.

The aim of this initiative was to draw attention upon the crisis still affecting the milk sector, to denounce the introduction of powdered milk on the market as a result of public intervention, and to demand the re-establishment of a public regulatory instrument designed to end the crisis, the longest in the sector's history.

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LVC SEAf condemns recent criminalisation of traditional seed exchange in Tanzania

b_350_0_16777215_00_images_2017-20-01-Peasant_seeds.jpgLVC SEAf Press Release, Harare

January 16, 2017

The recent reports that Tanzanian farmers would face heavy penalties or a long prison sentence if they continue their traditional seed exchange beyond government prescribed areas does not come as a surprise to La Via Campesina Southern and Eastern Africa (LVC SEAf) and its allies. This confirm our fears and what we have been lobbying against:- Alliance for Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA),[1] the New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition (NAFSN)[2] and the Common Markets for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA)[3] and Southern Africa Development Community (SADC)[4] seed harmonisation regulatory systems. The consultations with the smallholder farmers and their various associations was very limited and done on the last minute following an outcry by the Civil Society Organisations. We highlighted that seed policy harmonisation path to promote commercial seed industry will lead to criminalisation of traditional farmer saved seed systems whose foundation is among things underpin by ability to exchange their seeds without restrictions.

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Commission and Council only add to the dairy overflow with their milk powder

b_350_0_16777215_00_images_2017-18-01-ECVC_MILK.jpgMilk producers’ initiative – 23rd January, during the meeting of the EU Agriculture Council

ECVC Press Release- Brussels, 18th January 2017

On January 23rd, the European Coordination Via Campesina (ECVC), along with the European Milk Board (EMB), will demonstrate in front of the Justus Lipsius building – Rue de la Loi 175, 1000 Brussels, against the placement of milk powder resulting from public intervention, and in defence of the restoration of regulatory instruments on milk production in the EU.

It is easy to see why: when the European Commission and the EU Council of Ministers for Agriculture add 360,000 tonnes of milk powder – a result of the intervention – to an already inundated milk market, they are not helping the recovery of production prices, nor are they helping the industry commercialise their massive reserves generated by prolonged periods of recession.

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