Global: People’s Food Sovereignty Forum in Rome Nov. 2009

ancient egypt farmers


We are now heading toward the 2009 World Food Summit that FAO will host 16-18 November. Promises by world leaders in the summits of 1996 and 2002 to halve hunger have led to nothing. We are therefore calling on small-scale food providers (peasants and smallscale farmers, fishers, pastoralists), agrifood workers, rural youth, women, Indigenous Peoples, urban poor and non-governmental organizations to participate in a further elaboration of the food sovereignty agenda and to determine a people’s way out of the continuing multiple crises.

People’s Food Sovereignty Forum 2009
Forum of people’s organizations, social movements and NGOs Rome, 13 – 17 November 2009

From 13 to 17 November 2009, hundreds of representatives from civil society, nongovernmental and people’s movements of small scale food providers, Indigenous Peoples, food and rural workers, youth, women and food insecure city dwellers will meet in Rome to share and articulate their findings, proposals and actions at local, regional and global levels. The timing and location are designed to facilitate interaction with the 2009 FAO World Food Summit and to bring the voices and the lessons of people’s organizations to the ears of the Heads of State and Governments and to the international institutions gathered to discuss how to deal with an increasingly hungry world.

The world is rich yet there are a billion hungry people. This is an immoral and insufferable richness. Responsibility for this hunger is concentrated in the hands of a few and in well identified areas:

• The mantra of economic liberalization reiterated at national and international levels;
• Neglect of the primary production sector with the marginalization of small-scale food providers and the transformation of food consumers from food right holders to customers in the market place;
• The commodification of food, exposing it to the agrofuel craze, to the unregulated vagaries of the financial market and to the manipulation of its basic nature (be it physical, genetic or just ideological);
• The parallel nullification of the vital status of food for people’s survival;
• The privatization and patenting of knowledge, science and life; and
• The fragmentation and proposed repackaging of the global governance of food and agriculture in undemocratic, opaque and non-participatory ways.

The fragile, rich world we live in is now facing a structural and multifaceted crisis. Climate, energy, financial and economic crises further aggravate the persistent food crisis, the only one –so far– which has triggered riots in dozens of countries, clearly underlining how essential equitable access to food is to the well-being of people and to social and political stability.

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