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Food Sovereignty Social Movements

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Lecture at IUC Turin as part of a Module on Social Food Movements. Here I analyse the major achievements of Via Campesina and the Food Sovereignty movements it leads, deconstructing specific topics included in the general Food Sovereignty narrative and exploring them in some detail: food for export, food for consumption, agro-ecology, right to food, against dumping and GMOs, food is not a commodity, valuing indigenous food systems, commons, women's contribution to food production, etc

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Food Sovereignty Social Movements

  1. 1. Datos de hambre Food as a Commodity, Human Right or Common Good? Implications for Hunger Eradication JOSE LUIS VIVERO POL PhD Candidate in Food Governance Université Catholique de Louvain, Belgium FOOD SOVEREIGNTY SOCIAL MOVEMENTS JOSE LUIS VIVERO POL PhD Research Fellow in Food Governance Module “Social Food Movements” Master Food, Law & Finance March 2017 – Turin
  2. 2. 2 What is FOOD SOVEREIGNTY? #2. WORK IN PROGRESS, weak academic/UN support #4. Alternative to the industrial oil-dependant food system #1. RECENT CONCEPT (1996) quickly evolving, formulated by Vía Campesina #3. Common paradigm of CIVIL SOCIETY CIVIL & some STATES Bolivia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Nicaragua, Honduras, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Rep Dom Foto: Alessandra Ferrandes
  3. 3. 3 EVOLUTION From an anti- establishment and combative position to a viable alternative to tackle current flaws of the post-industrial food system, plus hunger, climate change and energy IDEOLOGICAL & propositive: the ONLY option B Foto:IanMackenzie Foto:F
  4. 4. Producers and Consumers shall regain control of the national food systems. Producing and comsuming food is a cultural issue No to TNC control over our food (Henry Kissinger) Foto: Jose Luis Vivero
  5. 5. 5 “FOOD AND NUTRITION SECURITY exists when…” Technocrats, technicians, official statements, consensus Twin track approach (production & acces to food) No questioning “food is a commodity” or “Balance of Power”: ACCESS IS THE MAIN ISSUE - NO GUILTIES THE MARKET IS BEST ALLOCATION MECHANISM OFICIAL DEFINITION World Food Summits 1996 & 2002 Foto: FAO ACCESS IS MAIN ISSUE NONE IS GUILTY THE MARKET IS BEST ALLOCATION MECHANISM
  6. 6. 6 Food Sovereignty #8 positive breakthroughs …EVIDENCE-BASED…
  7. 7. #1. FOOD is CULTURE When produce & eat them
  8. 8. 8 Food is not a COMMODITY such as screws (ergo OUT of WTO) But NOT a COMMONS either? Water yes, seeds & land disputed
  9. 9. The Economic Understanding of commons: Still prevailing in this movement 9
  10. 10. 10 #3. Family Farmers & Eaters KEY ACTORS in food systems (not retailers, middle-men & corporations) Foto:LianneMilton Foto:MarianoBonora
  11. 11. 11 #4. To revalue «RURALITY» & FAMILY FARMING as modern and not just URBAN & INDUSTRIAL Foto: Brazmidia Foto:Luca5
  12. 12. 12 #5. The NATIONAL MARKET is more important than EXPORTI MARKET (cash crops) (WDR 2008, BM) – Cultivating 4 Eating Foto: Megan Morgavan
  13. 13. 13 #6. HUNGER & RIGHT TO FOOD & PEASANTS´ RIGHTS recurrent in the political agenda Foto: UNICEF
  14. 14. 14 #7. NATIONAL SOVEREIGNTY re-affirmed vs deregularised markets & non-accountable transnationals Foto:JoseLuisVivero
  15. 15. 15 #8. RENDER VISIBLE local CULTURES, indígenous groups, rural women & agro-biodiversity Fotos:JoseLuisVivero
  16. 16. 16 #8 Elements that require further analysis & nuances Nuanced key claims …that may be difficult to pose within the food sovereignty movement Foto: Yuri Lima
  17. 17. 17 #1. Against Cash crops, exports & neoliberal markets Market, yes but… Priority to national market To cultivate for human consumption Strong Regulatory State that gives primacy to people´s rights over profit Binding Food Treaty Foto:dflorian1980
  18. 18. 18 #2. Against dumping Same rules to all, not hypocrisie Dumping is part of state sovereignty (supporting farmers) Countries that can/are willing to support their food producers (Brazil, China, India)
  19. 19. 19 #3. Against GMOs & Transgenics Biotecnology is a tool for modernization… a. Patents/IP rights In few corporative hands b. Public research didn´t do its job MORE A POLITICAL ISSUE OF CONTROL THAN A MORAL OR ENVIRONMENTAL
  20. 20. 20 #4. Against biofuels Generalizations R good for communication but bad for analysis Differentiated Impacts FOURFOLD CRISIS at same time: Food, Energy, Environment, Democracy Foto: Argonne National Laboratory
  21. 21. 21 #5. Against Transnational Food Corporations Foto:MattGiesbrech They occupy niches left by Governments They invest big money in innovative technologies, lobby & commercials Big Corporations just seek profit maximization & not society well- being
  22. 22. 22 #6. Against Industrial agriculture This type (modified perhaps) will remain with us many years It helps producing affordable food to all (but subsidised, not nutritious, not local, not sustainable) Transition to better models is COMPULSORY (less polluting, resource-demanding, oil-dependent)
  23. 23. 23 #7. Against State sovereignty & in favour of people´s rights Democracies do not represent us Re-invent more participative ones ¿Internet? « Peoples » in polítics is a fuzzy concept (boundaries) Nation-State system still valid, it might change though
  24. 24. 24 #8. Against rural exodus & international migration Migrating is not bad per se Urbanization is unstoppable historical trend Enhance rural livelihoods to keep people in rural areas Traveling is antidote to nationalisms & nurtures cosmopolitanism Foto:Dalvaou