Advocating for Food Sovereignty: Asserting Our Rights to Land and Food
Name of Organization:
Type of Initiatives:
- Asia and the Pacific
- Direct Lobbying Programme for Food Sovereignty with Policy Makers, Planners, Ruling as well as Opposition Parties, Experts, Research Institutions and Civil Society Organizations.
- Formation of Caucus of Members of Parliament (present & Ex- MPs) as a pressure group to achieve the objectives.
- Dialogue with other stakeholders in order to bring the charge in the policy level.
Goals: Develop a National Policy Programme on Food and Agriculture at the National Level. Sub goals include:
To raise awareness amongst the broad range of sectors (peasants, women, indigenous people, consumers, policy makers, workers, fisherfolks) on the important issues of Food Sovereignty.
To gather support from the range of sectors to push for the Peopleâ€™s Convention on Food Sovereignty that will be put forward to national governments and to the FAO World Food Summit + 10 in 2006.
To educate and mobilize people towards advocacy and policy changing efforts at various levels on issues of WTO, GE and Pesticides and Agrochemical TNCs.
To build a strong broad network of advocates for People's Food Sovereignty.
To promote and support ecological agriculture.
Mass Education through Public Hearing and Public Meetings. Need & Demand: Food Sovereignty is the people's and communities' fundamental right to determine their food and agricultural policies that affect their lives and livelihood. It is the right to access and control of their means of production to ensure that their food sovereignty is protected. It is the right to safe, culturally appropriate foods and sustainable food production. Food Sovereignty includes gender justice as it recognizes the right of women to economic and political rights.
Food Sovereignty has underpinnings in various multilateral agreements and conventions such as the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, World Food Summit Plan of Action, Universal Declaration on the Education of Hunger and Malnutrition, the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, just to name a few. While Food Sovereignty is a fundamental right and to a degree enshrined in many conventions and agreements, the reality in many Asian countries shows a different story massive hunger and poverty, landlessness of men and women peasants, unsafe food and water, and many other social problem that continue to plague the region. Current figures shows that there are 500 million people in Asia-Pacific who suffer chronic hunger.
Women and children are the most affected by hunger and poverty. For women, it is largely as a result of gender inequality and their lack of economic and political rights. According to the Special Rapporteur of the Commission on Human Rights on the right to food, girls are twice as likely to die from malnutrition and preventable childhood diseases as boys, and it is estimated that almost twice as many women suffer from malnutrition as men.
At the center of these problems are fundamental issues such lack of access to land and other resources, structural adjustment programmes and multilateral trade and investment agreements brought about by globalisation and which continue to wreck havoc on what remains of the rights of the people of most Asian countries.
The World Bank and IMF's imposed poverty reduction programme that promotes liberalization, deregulation and privatization does not address the problem of massive hunger and poverty but instead exacerbates it, particularly among peasants, women and children.
The WTO's unfair trade policies, mainly the Agreement on Agriculture (AoA), that forcibly opened the vulnerable economics of most Asian countries have resulted in the demise of self-sufficient agriculture and food production. Access to resources and means of production particularly land and seeds are no longer in the hands of peasants but with the big agrochemical corporations.
The issue of Food Sovereignty has been a rallying call for many grassroots organizations particularly peasant groups for many years now. It is a call to governments to adopt and implement agricultural and food policies that promote community based sustainable production as opposed to industry-led, high-input and export oriented production. It is a demand that food products should conform to high environmental, social and health quality standards; this includes a ban on pesticides and GMOs.
Most importantly, Food Sovereignty includes equitable access to land, water and other productive resources as well as a prohibition on patenting of life. This demand for food sovereignty is now being articulated by hundreds of peasant organizations, fisher folk, women and agricultural workers movements and NGOs/CSOs.
At the World Food Summit +5 in Rome in 2002, more than 600 representatives from these movements, and NGOs made food sovereignty central to the struggle for the eradication of hunger and malnutrition and to guarantee lasting sustainable food security for all people's. The demand is also for governments to recognize, guarantee and provide the environment and capacity of people to exercise their food sovereignty.
Right to Land and Food:
The roads that lead to poverty and hunger start by denying marginalized people access to productive resources, primarily access to land. Land is one the main factors of food production. The lack of implementation of genuine and pro-people land reform measures means a continuous cycle of poverty and hunger for the most marginalized groups of society.
Besides access to land, the right to productive resources such as seeds and water are crucial in ensuring Food Sovereignty. The PC 2004 will primarily focus on the rights of the people to land and productive resources. It will advocate an agricultural reform that gives the poor peasants access and control over the land, seeds and water, yields which are pesticide free and GM free; guarantees an ecological production for present and future generations; supports the rights of women farmers; and strengthens the communities in rural areas.
The target Population is:
- Policy Makers (Legislature, Members of Parliament both in the Upper House as well as in Lower House)
- Planners & Bureaucrats
- Research & Training Institutions
- Panchayati Raj Institutions / Institution of Grass Root Democracy
- Members of Civil Society Organizations
- The victims of hunger & starvation
Cost (specify currency):
The Project has not been funded yet
Source of Data:
Using a combination of own and existing data
Type of Data Collection:
Performance assessment / Desk studies
Specifications of type of data collection:
Data are collected only through one event.
Measurement Methods / Tools Generated or Used :
No measurement methods have been used.