Amid Climate-Fueled Food Crisis, Filipino Forces Open Fire on Starving Farmers 

Police and army forces shot at about 6,000 starving farmers and Lumad Indigenous people demonstrating for drought relief in the Philippines on Friday, ultimately killing 10.

 

On Monday, local farmer Noralyn Laus gave Democracy Now! a firsthand account of the disaster:

“Why we came down here is not to make trouble. We just want to demand for rice, because of the situation of El Niño is leaving our tribes hungry. What happened yesterday, we didn’t start it. They started it by beating us. We wouldn’t be angry if we weren’t beaten up or attacked. We’re having a crisis. We don’t have anything to eat or harvest. Our plants wilted. Even our water has dried up.”

“Our farmers—the country’s food producers—are battered the hardest and are left in poverty and hunger,” Rapollo said. “Civil disobedience will continue to escalate until the government stops playing deaf and blind to the genuine cry of the people.”

Source: Amid Climate-Fueled Food Crisis, Filipino Forces Open Fire on Starving Farmers | Common Dreams | Breaking News & Views for the Progressive Community

Wrapping up 2015 with Food First

The third of 3 organizations that I am highlighting today. Of the three, this is the international organization, and one that has created some very thoughtful and provocative positions for food organizers. The democratization of all supporting systems is vital to winning food sovereignty and Food First has done admirable work on that level for 40 years.
The sophistication of their work on environmental issues, social justice, monetary policy, labor policies and much more allows all little markets and gardens to be a integral part of a huge movement. As someone who has seen many movements splinter or become proprietary before they matured enough to have wide impact, I am thankful to those who remember and work so that this rising tide carries all boats.
And way too often, those of us building those fulcrums of local food systems-farmers markets- focus only on doing and spend too little reflecting or analyzing on what has worked and what hasn’t. Lucky for us, Food First is on top of that too.
Through Food First, I have learned about dozens of inspiring campaigns across the globe and had access to some of our most influential thinkers. Spending a little time at the vision level and checking out what is happening at the global level is what makes working locally entirely satisfying. I hope that you find Food First as useful as I have.

Source: World Hunger: Ten Myths : Food First

Slow Food Int’l Food Sovereignty Tour with Eddie Mukiibi

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Where & When

will visit five American cities where disparities in power and wealth trigger an inspired use of food to grow leadership, self-reliance and cooperation. Stops on the tour include universities, schools and school gardens, and urban farms.

November 5-18, 2015: New York City, Detroit, New Orleans, Petal, and Sacramento. Learn more about the public events listed below on theNational Slow Food Calendar:

  • November 5-7 in New York City
    • Thursday, November 5: Kelso Beer Tap Takeover at the Berg’n Beer Hall (6-8pm)
    • Friday, November 6: A global discussion at NYU followed by light refreshments and Ferrari sparkling wines (5-7pm)
  • November 7-10 in Detroit, MI
    • Sunday, November 8: A discussion at the Spirit of Hope Church about youth and food with Detroit youth activist Kadiri Sennefer followed by soup and bread (6-8pm)
  • November 11-14 in New Orleans, LA
    • Wednesday, November 11: Slow Food New Orleans Happy Hour at Café Carmo (6-8pm) featuring under-utilized seafood species
    • Saturday, November 14: Ring the opening bell at the Crescent City Farmers Market (8am-12pm)
  • November 13 in Petal (Hattiesburg), MS: Invitation-only event
  • November 15-18 in Sacramento, CA
    • Monday, November 16: A Slow Food Fall Mixer to draw solidarity between African and American garden projects (6-8pm)
      More information here

“…the pesadilla of the American dream”

“I acknowledged that farm workers were seldom given the spotlight, I saw this as an opportunity to honor the hard work of my parents, and farm workers all over the country,” Gonzalez told ATTN:. “They are the hardest working people in the world, and hardly ever are given the dignity and respect they deserve. I needed them to see, this wasn’t simply my success, this was a success of 22 years in the fields, this was all them.”

parents

These Incredible Photos Prove What the American Dream Really Looks Like – attn:.

Reclaiming, Relocalizing, Reconnecting: The Power of Taking Back Local Food Systems

A rare Wednesday post on the 45th anniversary of Earth Day.
A new report by Friends of the Earth Europe looks at five examples of European communities successfully taking on the challenge of creating new systems that honor wise stewardship, local wealth and health and civic engagement. Its an inspiring report; share it widely.

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Food sovereignty is what?

Agrarian Reform
Defense of territory
Agro-ecology
Local food systems

“World-wide, peasants, pastoralists, fisher-folk and other small-scale food producers
provide some 70% percent of the food consumed by humanity, even though we
probably only hold a quarter of all farm land. In Africa, we women farmers do about
70% of farm work, and we grow about 80% of the food. Peasants, and especially
peasant women, feed today’s world”

viacampesina.org/downloads/pdf/en/Elizabeth-The Hague-ISS-25 January 2014.pdf.

International Day of Peasant’s Struggle, April 17

The peasant movement, La Via Campesina is a bright light in the darkness that is spreading with global corporations controlling more and more of the natural resources across the world. This loose confederation of actions and organizations has its feet solidly in the food sovereignty movement, which I think U.S. activists should identify as our chief food system goal, rather than food security. Food security (availability of good food for all) is important, but more important is when it happens where the local community decides how, when and where to feed itself which is what food sovereignty encompasses.

“The international peasants’ movement La Via Campesina has been defending and expanding the practice and policies of food sovereignty around the world for 20 years. To launch another 20 years of struggle, we are calling for a massive mobilisation day on 17 April, the International Day of Peasants’ Struggles, to reclaim our food system which is being increasingly occupied by transnational capital. We invite everyone to organise activities, protests, art exhibitions, direct actions, discussions, film screenings, farmers markets etc., in your village, school, office, neighbourhood, organisation, community…”

Wherever you are, join this collective celebration on 17 April!

At the World Food Summit in 1996, La Via Campesina (LVC) launched a concept that both challenged the corporate dominated, market driven model of globalised food production and distribution, as well as offering a new paradigm to fight hunger and poverty by developing and strengthening local economies. Since then, food sovereignty has captured the imagination of people the world over – including many governments and multilateral institutions – and has become a global rallying cry for those committed to social, environmental, economic and political justice. Food sovereignty is different from food security in both approach and politics. Food security does not distinguish where food comes from, or the conditions under which it is produced and distributed. National food security targets are often met by sourcing food produced under environmentally destructive and exploitative conditions, and supported by subsidies and policies that destroy local food producers but benefit agribusiness corporations. Food sovereignty emphasizes ecologically appropriate production, distribution and consumption, social-economic justice and local food systems as ways to tackle hunger and poverty and guarantee sustainable food security for all peoples. It advocates trade and investment that serve the collective aspirations of society. It promotes community control of productive resources; agrarian reform and tenure security for small-scale producers; agro-ecology; biodiversity; local knowledge; the rights of peasants, women, indigenous peoples and workers; social protection and climate justice.