Resisting Land Grabbing in Germany


Land grabbing is no longer a phenomenon of the Global South only. In rural Germany, a highly undemocratic form of land control is accelerating the process of land concentration, contributing to the increase of land prices and creating barriers for young farmers to enter agriculture. With the Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries and Forests at hand, young farmers in Germany are trying to reverse this situation and claim agricultural land.

Until 2016, KTG-Agrar was the biggest agribusiness land owner in Germany, controlling over 38,000 ha in the country. When KTG-Agrar filed for bankruptcy, the young peasant association (Bündnis junge Landwirtschaft, BjL) together with young, mostly landless, members from La Via Campesina’s member organisation in Germany (Arbeitsgemeinschaft bäuerliche Landwirtschaft, AbL) gathered on the fields of KTG-Agrar. We peacefully expressed our desire to establish sustainable agriculture in the area, and we asked for support from the government for this. Nevertheless, the land was sold, via a dubious structure of shareholding companies, to a transnational insurance company from southern Germany and to a private foundation from Lichtenstein (Münchener Rück and Gustav-Zech-Stiftung).

Read more: Resisting Land Grabbing in Germany

“Naavenmaadbeku?” ("What should we do?")

2017-04-06 KRRS Youth Meeting.jpgKarnataka Rajya Raitha Sangha, KRRS, one of the biggest farmers' movements in South India, has initiated a process of political articulation focused on young farmers. On 1st of April the movement organised its first ever meeting to build a youth-centered farmers movement in the state. Women and Men in the age group 18-35 gathered along with senior leaders to discuss, debate, reflect on agrarian issues, and how spaces can be created for youth participation. There were overall representatives from about 15 districts of the state.

Read more: “Naavenmaadbeku?” ("What should we do?")

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. 

Read more: What do love letters have to do with farming?

Political declaration: International Meeting of the Struggling Youth – Women of Kobane

b_350_0_16777215_00_images_2016-09-15-Youth_foto6.jpgWe come from 43 nations, and 4 continents. We have different cultures, life experiences and we speak different languages. Although this diversity, there is something that unites us beyond being part of the same generation: the systemic violence that we all are subjected. This condition conforms to our identity that expressed internationally in the struggle, as a form of resistance from youth to imperialism.

Gathered in the city of Maricá, Rio de Janeiro - Brazil between 21 and 25 June 2016, we young fighters over 115 organizations, conducted the International Meeting of Struggling Youth - Women Kobane. These days we reaffirm our commitment to building an international articulation of Struggling Youth, with anti-imperialist, anti-colonialist, anti-capitalist, anti-neoliberal and anti- patriarchal character.

We live in a period of multiple crises, which calls into question the capitalist system, as we know it. Witnessed the worsening of the global economic crisis, which began in 2008 in the center of the system, and now spreading globally, causing a brutal increase of unemployment, poverty, massive immigration flows. Despite the wars promoted by imperialism as a means of accelerating economic activity and expand the domination and exploitation of territories and resources, there is not a way out of perspective to this crisis. With this, the violence of capital enhances the social crisis, causing police repression, genocide of the poorest people, especially the youth.

Read more: Political declaration: International Meeting of...

Building global alliances and convergences for alternatives to capitalism

b_350_0_16777215_00_images_2016-08-30-Youth_Brasil_Summit.jpgLa Vía Campesina Youth Participate in Brazil’s 2016 ‘International Summit for Struggling Youth’: Building global alliances and convergences for alternatives to capitalism 

From June 21 to 26, 280 youth from four continents and 115 organizations participated in the International Summit for Struggling Youth (Encuentro Internacional de la Juventude en la Lucha) in Maricá, Brazil. The meeting was convened by three Brazilian organizations — Levante Popular da Juventude/Brazil (Popular Youth Uprising), the Articulation of Social Movements toward ALBA and La Vía Campesina’s Landless Workers’ Movement (MST). A central outcome was a declaration that the youth delegates will take back to their organizations to discuss future involvement to create a global international coordinating body for youth struggles. The proposed coordinating body would facilitate joint actions and solidarity among rural and urban youth and among youth in different parts of the world. This global youth movement may offer the youth of the National Farmers Union an opportunity to contribute to and learn from their counterparts in related movements, including those working on education, housing and access to land.

Read more: Building global alliances and convergences for...

Youth and agriculture: Join the European food sovereignty movement!

b_350_0_16777215_00_images_2016-03-28-Youth_and_Agric.jpegFirst published in Farming Matters | 32.1 | March 2016

The food sovereignty movement is, in itself, a process of knowledge co-creation. Ludwig Rumetshofer, a young farmer from Austria, and Sylvia Kay, a Netherlands-based researcher invite us to participate in the second Nyéléni Europe Forum for Food Sovereignty in October 2016, in Romania.

Between the 26th and 30th of October in Cluj Napoca, Romania, the second Nyéléni Europe Forum for Food Sovereignty will be held. Drawing together between 700 – 1000 older and younger participants from 42 countries throughout wider Europe, it will serve as a celebration of the full spectrum of the food sovereignty movement comprising peasants and small farmers, fishers, pastoralists, shepherds, indigenous peoples, trade unions, consumers groups, NGOs, local authorities, researchers and many others.

The richness and diversity of the movement shows how increasing numbers of people, organisations and networks are coalescing around the shared language of food sovereignty and agroecology. It is also testament to the vast knowledge that is being co-created by these groups on how to organise food and agricultural systems that work both for people and the environment. It is crucial that those who care for, work on, live on the land and produce plentiful and healthy food are at the centre of that system.

Read more: Youth and agriculture: Join the European food...

A real system change has to come from below, says Paula Gioia, the European Youth ICC member of La Via Campesina

b_350_0_16777215_00_images_2016-02-09-paula_iss2.jpgClosing speech by Paula Gioia, the European Youth International Coordination Committee (ICC) member of La Via Campesina, at the International Institute of Social Studies (ISS) colloquium on Global governance/politics, climate justice & agrarian/social justice: linkages and challenges. 4-5 February 2016, The Hague, Netherlands

Firstly I would like to thank you all who were involved in the organisation of this great event. I also thank you for giving me this space to talk in the name of small scale farmers of the world. But I would like to say, that I see myself as just one of you. I could be Alberto, Ana, Henk, Midori, Sara, Jun, Ludwig, Sofia, Umut or any of you... Because I am pretty sure, that we all share similar values and are convinced that capitalism is rotten and is the origin of the multiple crises we are facing today. A real system change has to come from below. And I see that each of us plays a very important role in this process. Whatever sectors we belong to, I believe we are all working in one part of this big web.

It was great to share different concerns, struggles and strategies with you during these two days and to look ahead, in order to keep working together in a common plan of political changes. In this context of multiple crises, I can guarantee you, that we, small farmers, peasants, fisher folk, pastoralists, indigenous people, migrant workers of La Via Campesina will keep struggling for a system change. We will keep struggling against capital power and against patriarchalism. We will keep struggling in order to establish social, financial, climate, environmental and nutritional justice in our common planet.

Read more: A real system change has to come from below,...

Youth and agriculture


The new edition of the Nyéléni Newsletter is now online! Click here to read the English edition.  In this edition of the newsletter the Youth of La Via Campesina call to the youth of the world - to educate, mobilize and organize for Food Sovereignty now!

Read about the struggles and visions of young people for building a radical new society.    

MST's youth define struggles for the next period

VIth MST Congress - 10 to 14 of February, 2014

b_350_0_16777215_00_images_youthmst.jpg11th February 2014,  The challenge of being the sons and daughters of Latin America’s largest organized movement. It is an honour and a responsibility to be heir to 30 years of struggle and resistance.

The desire to follow in the footsteps of those hardened feet which broke barriers and conquered land. And to move the production and self-organization of MST’s camps and settlements forwards.

The 3rd National MST's Youth Assembly, which took place on Monday (10/02) during the 6th MST Congress, began with poetry, music and theatre, all full of the characteristic energy of the fighting youth.

Read more: MST's youth define struggles for the next period

Japan : youth activists organize a radio program on World Food day

(Tokyo, October 16) Some members of NOUMINREN youth with non-farmer local youth activists organize an internet radio on Wednesdays (twice a month) inviting a new guest each time. The name of  the radio is "Chihouhakkutsu Radio" meaning "local treasure hunting radio." We do not station in one place, but everybody participate from their house through Skype broadcasting through Ustream. The objective of our radio is to know and support local youth activists who do not have youth friends around in their region. 

On the 16th of October, a female youth farmer from Nagano prefecture and a male youth farmer from Aichi prefecture and three non-farmers participated in the radio. On the radio, they introduced that October the 16th is World Food Day and it is celebrated in the world.

Read more: Japan : youth activists organize a radio...

Additional information