Tag Archive: right to food

Oct 24

IDEAL Providence Farms: Be Open for any Improvement towards Organic Development

I, Georgina Komsoon, was greatly honoured to participate as a representative for Africa within the IFOAM-INOFO delegation at the UNSCF. My expectations were very high and the presentation and results of Rio + 20 show that ORGANIC Farming and the way of life has a future. This gives me hope. For me, my family, my sisters and brothers (not only) in Africa.

I will try my very best to transmit the lesson learned as soon as possible and to as many farmers as possible here in Ghana and especially to the groups of women to whom I cooperate. Only our common efforts on the working level can bring the necessary bottom-up change. And if the political level participates, it is even better.

To accelerate the organic movement we have to engage in a stronger way women and young people. Especially the young people believe that their future is in the urban areas and not in the rural area.

May I introduce to you one member – Akua Siedu – of the women group I work together with and who is now the supervisor in the processing of the organic shea butter.  Few years ago she could not even afford to pay her children’s school fee. But today, due to the economic progress the group has made within the project, she is able to put up the livelihood for her family and herself. And this is not common for the Muslim communities in the rural areas in northern Ghana. She never went to school (which is also common in the rural area and especially for a girl) but she can write and read. She was trained as much as possible and today she understands the principles of organic farming and the importance of sustainable agriculture.

Akua Siedu: Georgina explained to us the targets of RIO+20. Even if Brazil is far away, we in the rural area of the northern Ghana will be affected by the results of this conference. For communities like ours, living in a subsistence economy, it is important if the results are positive or negative. The information we got concerning food security, improving local seeds for better food, improving the production and the conservation of local food for more health and nutrition were very helpful for us. It will also contribute to the improvement of the environment.

Georgina Koomson
IDEAL Providence Farms

May 04

Nature & Progrès: Food Sovereignty First!

The issues of food and hunger around the world question the current systems of production, processing and marketing of agricultural products. Peasants represent 70% of the hungry.

Yet, the right to food appears in the 1948 Declaration of Human Rights: “Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food”. Also, in 2007, at the Forum for Food Sovereignty in Mali, the declaration of Nyéléni underlined that all people have the right to safe, nutritious and culturally appropriate food, produced sustainably and ecologically.

Food sovereignty is the right for countries and peoples to define their own agricultural and food policies, and must be the engine of peasant and citizens mobilization.

Food sovereignty breaks with the current organization of international agricultural markets and is the answer for more equitable, sustainable and respectful food systems.

Food sovereignty rejects the idea that food products should be products like any other, only managed by the agro-food industry and subject to the strategies of multinationals and to the adverse effects of international trade.

Food sovereignty implies that farmers should get a fair income for their production.

Food sovereignty adds value to an agriculture respectful of life, food habits and traditions, hence creating social bonds between men and women living close geographically and socialy.

Food sovereignty opposes the standardization of agricultural and food production.

Food sovereignty tends to develop agricultural systems focused on national and regional needs, hence reducing dependence to international markets.

Food sovereignty opposes the privatization of natural resources, even allowed by law.

Food sovereignty connects producers and consumers, rural and urban communities, for them to exchange and to master their food production.

Nature & Progrès and its partners calls out to citizens and policy makers to promote healthy food for all, in their campaigns “Alimentons” (“Alimentons l’Europe” in 2009, “Alimentons les regions” in 2010, and “Alimentions” in 2012)

By developing Participatory Guarantee Systems (PGS) in organic production, Nature & Progrès takes action to support knowledge exchange and develop new and transparent relations between organic stakeholders in France, e.g. peasants, craftsmen and citizens.

Message to Rio+20

Nature & Progrès alerts NGOs and policy makers on the transformation of elements of biodiversity into commercial goods or services. Any patent, or any financial value given to elements of biodiversity is the beginning of their destruction. A collective asset taken outside of its social system, or an ecosystem service outside of its ecosystem, no longer fulfill their social or ecological function: they become mere speculative products on the financial markets.

The market is unable to ensure the equitable distribution of land, water, seeds and other elements of biodiversity essential to life. Their conservation first and foremost depends on the respect of local communities’ rights to use and manage their resources sustainably.

Nature & Progrès
http://www.natureetprogres.org