(Rome, October 11, 2012) A delegation of women and men farmers members of theinternational peasant’s movement La Via Campesina will attend the 39th Session ofthe Committee on World Food Security (CFS) in Rome from October 15 to 20 in orderto defend small scale sustainable farming as the best way to feed the world’spopulation.
Some companies and policy makers still claim that agribusiness offers a solution toworld hunger. A recent article by Suma Chakarabarti and Jose Graziano da Silva,respectively heads of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development andthe FAO, calling for large private investments in agriculture even talks about“fertilizing land with money” (Wall Street Journal, September 2012).
However, evidence shows that, so far, industrial production has only played a minor role in worldwide food production. Over 70% of the world population consumes food from small holder based production, peasants, fisher folk, pastoralists and indigenous people. Women play a pivotal role in producing much of this food worldwide. On the contrary, over the last decades, the agro-industry has actually reduced small holders’ capacities to produce : hampering access to land, controlling processing and markets, reducing farmers rights to seeds, forcing agrochemical packages, etc.
Investments in agriculture will be one of the hot issues on the table at the CFS negotiations in October. The Via Campesina farmers from around the world will be arguing that policies aiming at strengthening food production should primarily support and facilitate investments by small-scale food producers themselves. There is an urgent need for increased public investments to support sustainable agriculture while family farming needs to be protected against corporate investments and resources’ grab.
15 October, 2pm – UEMOA room (ground floor building A) FAO building – Rome
– Press conference : “World Food Day. Land, water and resources’ grab: Agribuiness kills”. La Via Campesina proposals to solve world hunger.
Speakers: Farmers leaders from Africa, Asia, Europe and America.
– Film screening: “Struggle against land grabbing in Mali” (12”)
How large scale investments in agriculture are destroying farmers livelihoods.
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