Agriculture’s Great Rising

 

Photo credit: “Food Sovereignty: Sustainable Urban Agriculture in Cuba”, at https://www.globalresearch.ca/food-sovereignty-sustainable-urban-agriculture-in-cuba/5332167.

Photo credit: “Food Sovereignty: Sustainable Urban Agriculture in Cuba”, at
https://www.globalresearch.ca/food-sovereignty-sustainable-urban-agriculture-in-cuba/5332167.

La Via Campesina, an NGO devoted to peasants’ rights and food sovereignty, hosted an event dedicated to agroecology at the opening of the COP 23. La Via Campesina takes an alternative approach to agriculture, denouncing any industrial and capitalist attitude toward food production. Under an industrial and capitalist approach, food is exported to countries continents away, and not used to feed the population of countries where it’s grown. Under the approach of La Via Campesina, peasants–a pre-industrial term that the group revives to distinguish itself from giant agriculture companies–produce food to feed people locally, and can designate where they want their produce to go. In the panel, La Via Campesina argued that the industrial food system–including not just agriculture, but transportation, packaging, and deforestation–is responsible for around 50% of global greenhouse gas emissions. The silver lining of this number means that agriculture is an area with great potential for improvement in terms of cutting emissions. But emissions aren’t the only problem: in the eyes of one member, giant agrochemical companies like Monsanto are “experimenting“ on the best land of more vulnerable states like Puerto Rico. Instead, to pave the way to food security and environmental justice, La Via Campesina–Spanish for “the peasant way”–urges everyone to take the road less travelled toward food sovereignty and agroecology.