Support landless farmers in Brazil


Small farmers and their families occupying underutilized land on the Serro Azul farm in Pernambuco, Brazil have been facing ongoing threats and acts of violence. Since mid-April when the occupation began, small farmers have been shot at and physically beaten by thugs hired by the landowners. And, the local authorities have yet to start any criminal investigations or enforce any laws protecting the human rights of the families in the encampment.

Please take action today to stop this brutality and impunity against landless families in Pernambuco. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it." target="_blank">click here

Why are the FAO and the EBRD promoting the destruction of peasant and family farming?

Common statement of La Via Campesina - GRAIN - Friends of the Earth International (FoE) - Coordinadora Latinoamericana de Organizaciones del Campo (CLOC) - Re:Common -World March of Women -ETC group -Latin American Articulation of Movements Toward ALBA (see full list below)

(14 September 2012) We are shocked and offended by an article co-signed by Jose Graziano da Silva, Director General of the UN's Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), and Suma Chakrabarti, President of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), that was pusblished in the Wall Street Journal on September 6, 2012.1 In the article, they call on governments and social organisations to embrace the private sector as the main engine for global food production.

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Malian farmers want their land back



Bamako — A group of smallholder farmers in Mali have turned to the courts to try to recover land they say they have lost to big private investors. The legal action comes as foreign investors are losing interest in Mali due to political instability and an armed rebellion in the north.

"We have laid a complaint against the agricultural land grabs that have hit so many smallholders," said Lamine Coulibaly, a member of the National Coordination of Peasant Organisations, which is resisting the large-scale acquisition of agricultural land by foreign investors.

The farmers next day in court will be on Sep. 27, in the central Mali town of Markala. They hope to put the brakes on the requisitioning of land they have been cultivating for generations.

"There have already been several sittings without actual deliberation, but we have confidence in the justice system. We are convinced that we are in the right and we can win this case," said Coulibaly.

The respondent in this case is Office of the Niger, a government department which oversees the the development of a million square hectares of farmland in this central region. A dam constructed by the French colonial authorities in 1932 could be the basis for enormous agricultural potential in the region, but barely 100,000 hectares had been developed before the arrival of foreign investors in 2008.

Read more: Malian farmers want their land back

The European Coordination Via Campesina supports the actions of SOC-SAT and their leaders

The SOC-SAT (Sindicato de Obreros del Campo –Sindicato Andaluz de Trabajadores) has undertaken many different actions in recent months to achieve fairer production, consumption and sales’ regulations for agricultural produce in the context of food sovereignty.

The political courage shown by SOC-SAT and particularly by their leaders is unprecedented. By undertaking actions of resistance, and proposing alternatives, SOC-SAT is challenging the current neo-liberal system and its disastrous impacts on people.

Recent actions include that of 24th July by SOC-SAT agricultural workers in Andalusia who occupied the La Turquilla farm.

SOC-SAT demands that the farm laborer’s cooperatives be allowed to work the land of the 2,000 hectares of fertile land that is owned by the army, in order to feed their families, instead of using it to grow export crops and rear horses.

Given the current serious economic and social crisis affecting Spain as well as the rest of Europe, SOC-SAT’s actions provide credible solidarity alternatives for defending social justice and human rights in a way that reaches beyond capitalist dogma.

Farmland should first and foremost be used for small-scale family farming and meet the social, environmental and economic challenges of our society.

We also call for an initiative for European agrarian reform of land use, to serve food security and sustainable development.

Contact : Javier Sanchez, Member of the Coordinating Committee of ECVC

For further information : SAT

Additional information