La Via Campesina demands FAO to support the real solutions to the food crisis

Media advisory - La Via Campesina - 4 October 2010

La Via Campesina demands FAO to support the real solutions to the food crisis

(Jakarta, October 4, 2010) From the 11th until the 16th of October, the plenary session of the Committee on World Food Security of the FAO is being held. Farmers from the international peasants' movement La Via Campesina will be present there with other stakeholders from civil society to demand real solutions for the worldwide permanent food crisis, as well as concrete measures to tackle the problems of speculation with food commodities and land-grabbing.

During the forum of the Civil Society Organizations that will be held from the 8th to the 10th of October, also in Rome, grass-roots organizations will discuss the proposals they will present to the governments. With the reform of the Committee on World Food Security (CFS) of the FAO, civil society is now more permanently consulted, but the full participation of small-scale scale food producers is not yet guaranteed by the FAO. At this moment our food policies are controlled by the views of rich donor countries, undemocratic institutions such as the World Bank and agro-multinationals with exorbitant lobby budgets.

The agenda of the CFS shows the increased interest of big capital in food and agricultural products through land-grabbing, often for agrofuels, and speculation with food commodities.

Financial speculation is and has been widely recognised as the major cause of the food crisis of 2007-2008 and should therefore be efficiently stopped at the international or regional level if we really want to prevent this from happening again. Moreover, mechanisms to regulate agricultural markets should be adopted, contrary to what the World Trade Organisation and the diverse Free Trade Agreements are promoting now.

In addition, the global search for massive acquisitions of farmlands will in no way strengthen local producers and can only deteriorate their access to land and therefore should be stopped immediately.

The FAO can become a space for the implementation of food sovereignty, but should address real solutions and listen to small farmers' voices and not provide legitimacy to processes pushed by a corporate-driven search for benefits.

Media Programme:

11th of October - 11h: Press Conference: Presentation of publication "Sustainable Peasant and Family Farm Agriculture Can Feed the World" + interviews with farmer representatives from around the world (Philippines room -- FAO building)

12th of October - 11h: Participation in a joint "land-grab story-telling action" with testimonies from farmers affected by land evictions -- media and picture opportunity (in front of FAO building)

15th of October -- 10h: Press Conference: Farmers' Evaluation of the FAO CFS plenary - Press Conference by La Via Campesina (Philippines room - FAO building)

Press Contacts:

• Annelies Schorpion: +393393972104 (7th to 15th of October) or +32474847280,  [email protected], [email protected]

• Lorenzo Misuraca (Aiab): +393293562461, [email protected]

Farmers' representatives available for interviews (provisional list):

• Henry Saragih -- Indonesia

• Renaldo Chingore -- Mozambique

• Hortense Kinkodila -- Congo Brazzaville

• Jeomsook Goo - South Corea

• Antonia Ivoneide Melo e Silva -- Brasil

• Mangalisa Kibheka -- South Africa

• Andrea Ferrante -- Italy

• Jeanne Verlinden -- Belgium

• Chantal Jacovetti -- France

• José Miguel Gonçalves -- Portugal

Please find our latest news on www.viacampesina.org

International Operational Secretariat

La Via Campesina

Jl. Mampang Prapatan XIV/5 Jakarta Selatan 12790, Indonesia

Tel/Fax : +62-21-7991890/+62-21-7993426

E-mail  : [email protected]

Website : www.viacampesina.org

Who's involved?

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