Food Sovereignty Draft Manifesto

Posted in : - Blog -, Agriculture and Food Policy on by : petersen Comments: 0

  1. Local small scale production and distribution of food can best meet the needs of producers for food security, and of consumers for wholesome healthy tasty food worldwide.
  2. Billions of people worldwide- perhaps the majority of the world’s population – would gain satisfaction from meeting at least some of their own food needs by producing their own food on their own land.
  3. Small scale food production involves hard, back breaking dirty work, especially for women. Science and technology should be developed  and deployed locally to alleviate such problems.
  4. Famines and starvation have never been caused and are not likely to be caused by shortages of food worldwide. Famines are caused when particular groups of people lack the ability either to produce their own food or to buy it. Increasing the numbers of people engaged in small scale production of food by  farmers and peasants working their own land is an important route towards enhancing food security worldwide, especially in developing countries.
  5. The central  purpose of this draft  Manifesto is to encourage and stimulate groups of food consumers, producers and distributors (in other words everybody!) to work in their own ways to achieve these broad objectives.
  6. At present, the world system of  production and distribution of food is directed mainly towards meeting  the drive for profit of large multinational corporations.
  7. These corporations  are continually increasing the scale and intensity  of their operations internationally  in terms of  arable and animal farming, fertilizer production and large scale distribution involving supermarkets.
  8. These processes will continue to fail  to increase food security for billions of people in developing countries.
  9. Corporations are deploying technology in their operations, including the use of genetic modification  on a large scale to increase food production, productivity and profits.
  10. The operations of the current “world food production and distribution system” do produce increasing quantities of low cost food.
  11. But the history of the Green Revolution indicates the need for scepticism about whether the current system will lead to enhanced  security for billions of poor people in developing countries
  12. The current system involves concentration on increasingly  intensive production of an  ever smaller varieties  of food on an increasing scale worldwide.
  13. The costs of this “system” in terms of  loss of biodiversity, pollution  and environmental degradation are liable to be catastrophic.
  14. Large farmers in the United States and Europe are supported by enormous Government and European Union subsidies.
  15. These large farmers  and international corporations export huge quantities of subsidised food to developing countries, undermining the ability of developing country farmers to market  the food they and to contribute to local food sovereignty.
  16. This system -especially huge mass production, distribution and consumption of packaged  factory food and soft  drinks with terrible nutritional qualities  – has  resulted in deterioration of the nutritional qualities and taste of the food eaten by billions of people, and has helped to cause extensive health problems. As consequences, obesity, diabetes  and heart disease now constitute worldwide epidemics.

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