Main Issues

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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One of India’s Largest Training Camps on Ecological Agriculture Ongoing in Karnataka

2017-01-16 Public.jpegMasses of people gathered together is not an unusual sight in India; this is common at religious events or political mobilizations. But to see thousands of farmers come together to attend a class on ecological farming is extraordinary. One such class is taking place at the Muruga Matha, a religious institution in southern Karnataka, where a five-day intensive study camp on a chemical-free farming method called Zero Budget Natural Farming (ZBNF) is taking place. 

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What do love letters have to do with farming?

2017-01-16 Agroecology training.jpgWriting love letters may seem like an unusual activity for a course on farming and agroecology. But, in this course, young farmer-students proposed to their imaginary partners in their letters, commenting on their realizations about gender. “I realized that we place so many conditions on women,” wrote one student. A key reflection of the entire course was that shifting to agroecology and sustainable agriculture isn’t just about a change in production models, its as much about changing the relationships we have--including between genders.

Indians, as is the case in many countries around the world, have unrealistic expectations of women, and this is especially evident in the marriage market – women should be light skinned, they should be conventionally attractive, they should be educated but be ready to turn into submissive housewives, they should uphold caste norms, they should know how to cook and clean, and on and on. Rarely do women have a say in any important decision concerning their own lives. 

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For an agricultural and food policy at the service of the people!

logo-eurovia.pngPress release

Brussels, January 12, 2017

The debate on the post-2020 CAP has started; the President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Junker acknowledged the importance of a European Agricultural Policy, the European Commissioner for Agriculture Phil Hogan announced a reform under the banner of "modernization and simplification" and the forthcoming launch of a broad public consultation.

Today, the European Coordination Via Campesina will present the basis for its engagement in the debate for the future CAP, in order to set up an Agricultural and Food Policy that truly answers the needs of the European peoples and that shows the human and responsible face of Europe.

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“Agroecology is a Way of Life”, an in-depth interview with students of agroecologic school EDUCAR

b_350_0_16777215_00_images_2017-01-04-Educar3.jpegJanuary 2, 2017 (First published by The Dawn News

From the solidarity group of Çiftçi-SEN / Turkey (Confederation of Small-Farmers’ Unions).

I was in Brazil to participate in the “International Encounter of Struggling Youth” as a Turkish delegate, which was held in Marica, Rio de Janeiro in June 2016. After the youth encounter, I had the chance to stay a couple of weeks in Brazil to visit some camps and settlements of the Agrarian Reform, some cooperatives and agroecology schools of MST.

This was a moment great importance to discover, because MST was putting very much importance both on the theoretical and practical sides of agroecology. MST consider agroecology as a way of life, a way connecting to the society, as well as a struggle against agribusiness and the ongoing coup process put in forward by the neoliberal Temer government (1). This means that agroecology is not only a method of farming, but also a life vision, which is build up day by day in the camps and settlements, in the formal or informal agroecology schools, in political formation of the militants. In other words, each space of MST is based on the formation of agroecology, as a political paradigm against the transnational agribusiness hegemony over agriculture and food systems.

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Agroecology in Puerto Rico

2017-01-04-WhyHunger.jpgJanuary 4, 2017 (First published by WhyHunger)

“I feel that that’s the revolution; a just way to live, a way in harmony with not just with the environment—with people, with everything around us because we are nature, we are a part of nature. Agroecology for me represented the most harmonious way to create that way of life.” - Josué Lopez

On November 11th to 13th, La Via Campesina member organization Organización Boricuá held the Campamento Agroecológico de Formación Política [Agroecological Encampment for Political Formation] at the Siembra Tres Vidas farm in the mountainous municipality of Aibonito, located one hour south of San Juan, Puerto Rico. The encampment’s 25-plus participants brought together members of Organización Boricuá, other activists involved in agroecology projects throughout the island, and activists and organizers involved in other social struggles. I participated in the three-day encampment as a representative of WhyHunger, to develop our understanding of the current context in Puerto Rico and to learn more about the organizing work happening on the island around agroecology.

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170 Global Groups Call for Moratorium on New Genetic Extinction Technology at UN Convention

b_350_0_16777215_00_.._fr_images_stories_biodiversty_gene-drives.pngAt the 2016 UN Convention on Biodiversity held in Cancun Mexico this month, international conservation and environmental leaders called upon governments to establish a moratorium on the controversial genetic extinction technology called gene drives.

Gene drives, developed through new gene-editing techniques- are designed to force a particular genetically engineered trait to spread through an entire wild population – potentially changing entire species or even causing deliberate extinctions. The statement urges governments to put in place an urgent, global moratorium on the development and release of the new technology, which poses serious and potentially irreversible threats to biodiversity, as well as national sovereignty, peace and food security. 

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