People’s Expo: NGOs’ and Peasant’s Movements’ Response to Feeding the Planet Sustainably

From 3rd to 5th June at Fabbrica del Vapore in Milan: Three days of conferences, meetings and cultural events concerning Food Sovereignty and Environmental Justice 

On Wednesday, June 3rd, at the Fabbrica del Vapore in Milan, People’s Expo, an international forum of civil society and peasant’s movements will begin.

This forum will last until the 5th of June and will bring together over 150 delegates from all over the world. The main purpose is to assert the voices of peoples, in order to propose and illustrate best practices and alternative solutions put in place to cope with the global problems of access to food and natural resources. The governments and transnational corporations are grabbing the spotlight at the official expo and we must make the voices of peoples be heard through this important space. 

The event is organized by the People’s Expo Committee, a group gathering 50 NGOs and associations of the Italian civil society together with international networks and peasant’s movements who operate on a daily basis in various areas such as: cooperation for development, environmental justice, human rights, organic production, critical consumption.

“This year, while the United Nations are setting the new Sustainable Development Goals and a new Global Agreement on Climate Change – explains Giosué De Salvo, the Committee spokesman- People’s Expo wants to seize the opportunity of the theme chosen by Expo 2015, to make the political agenda focus on the respect of human rights and the limits of the planet. The forum will give voice, above all to representatives of small-scale and family farming, excluded from the official Expo despite the fact they produce 70% of food consumed globally and are nowadays the main investors in agriculture.” As a matter of fact, it is at the People’s Expo that some of the world’s most important peasants’ movements will participate, including: La Via Campesina, the International Planning Committee for Food Sovereignty, the Terra Madre Network of food communities, the Global Call to Action Against Poverty and the Climate Action Network.

An intense three-day program, with schedules from 9 am to 18 pm, will include plenary lectures, a speakers’ corner where participants will be able to share their own testimony and working spaces reserved for delegates. Many issues will be addressed during the forum: the promotion and support of agro-ecology and biodiversity conservation; the transition towards an oil-free economy; solidarity economy and ethical finance; but also issues of crucial importance for the more “vulnerable” peoples on the planet, as the impact of free trade agreements, financial speculation and land and water grabbing, which is the phenomenon of large-scale acquisition of land and water at the hands of transnational companies, foreign governments and investment funds that is damaging the rural economy, especially in the South, but also in Europe.

Among the most eagerly-awaited lectures is that of the English writer and historian Tristram Stuart – founder of Feedback, a movement against food waste and a strong supporter of the “freeganism”, an anti-consumerist ethic that promotes the consumption of fresh food discarded by the large-scale retail trade and beyond – scheduled for the June 3rd at 12.30; that of Carlo Petrini, founder of Slow Food International, and Elizabeth Mpofu, international coordinator of La Via Campesina, scheduled for June 4th at 10.45; and the participation of Ibrahima Coulibaly, Malian peasant unionist and founder of the National Coordination of Peasant Organizations of Mali (CNOP) on June 5th at 14.30.

Moreover, during the three days, from 9pm onwards, several free cultural events will take place: Wednesday June 3rd, for example, the rapper Frankie hi nrg mc and the Orchestra di Via Padova will liven up the evening. Meanwhile, on Thursday June 4th, it will be time for witty comicality with, comedians and writers, Giobbe Covatta and Diego Parassole.


June 3rd 2015 – La Fabbrica del Vapore, Via Giulio Procaccini 4, 20124 Milan

June 4th 2015 – La Fabbrica del Vapore, Via Giulio Procaccini 4, 20124 Milan

On streaming:

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The international networks participating to People’s Expo:

Terra Madre network of food communities, Global Call to Action Against Poverty (GCAP), La Via Campesina, IPC – International Planning Committee on Food Sovereignty, Nyeleni Europe, World Fair Trade Organization, Urgenci (the international network of community-supported agriculture), RIPESS – Intercontinental network for the promotion of social solidarity economy, Climate Action Network, La Red Vida – Vigilancia Interamericana para la Defensa y Derecho al Agua.

The members of People’s Expo Committee:

ACLI, Acra-CCS, Action Aid, Agices, AIAB Lombardia, AIIG- Associazione Italiana Insegnanti di Geografia – sez. Lombardia, Ai.Bi., AMREF Health Africa, Associazione Arcobaleno, ARCI, ARCS, CHICO MENDES, COE, CoLomba, Comitato Italiano Contratto Mondiale sull’Acqua onlus, Cooperativa Cambiamo, Cooperativa Famiglie Lavoratori, Coordinamento Soci Lombardia – Consorzio CTM Altromercato, COSPE, DEAFAL, DESR Brianza, DESR Martesana, Focuspuller, Fondazione Aiutare i Bambini, Fratelli dell’Uomo, GVC, HUMANA People to People Italia, IBVA, WE WORLD, IPSIA nazionale, ISCOS, Istituto OIKOS, L’Africa Chiama, LEGAMBIENTE, MANI TESE, NEXUS Emilia Romagna, Nutrire il Pianeta è Nutrire la Pace – Rete territoriale Cremona, OXFAM ITALIA, PAX CHRISTI, PIME, Progetto AXÈ, SLOW FOOD, SOLETERRE, Tavolo RES, Terre di Mezzo, VIS, WWF