By Nyeleni 2011
After 5 days of intense, inspired and constructive exchange, the Nyeleni Europe 2011, European Forum for Food Sovereignty closed on August 22. The Forum adopted the first European Declaration on Food Sovereignty.
Over 400 delegates from European countries committed to strengthening their collective capacity to reclaiming community control over food system, to resisting the agro-industrial system and to expanding and consolidating a strong European movement for Food Sovereignty.
Over 120 organisations and individuals, representing civil society and social movements discussed the impact of current European and global policies.
Together they developed a comprehensive platform and a set of principles to achieve food sovereignty in Europe. The Forum emphasized the contribution of voices of young people, woman and food producers, whose concerns are often overlooked. This diversity and richness of experience enabled the Nyeleni Europe 2011 Forum to identify a common framework, and to define a joint action plan based on a democratic and participatory process.
The Declaration proclaims, “we are convinced that a change to our food system is a first step towards a broader change in our societies”. The Forum delegates strongly committed to taking the food system into their own hands by:
– Working towards an ecologically sustainable and socially just model of food production and consumption based on non-industrial smallholder farming, processing and alternative distribution
– Decentralizing the food distribution system and shortening the chain between producers and consumers
– Improving working and social conditions, particularly in field of food and agriculture
– Democratizing decision-making on the use of the Commons and heritage (land, water, air, traditional knowledge, seeds and livestock)
– Ensuring that public policies at all levels guarantee the vitality of rural areas, fair prices for food producers and safe, GMO-free food for all.
At this time of political volatility, social and economic crisis, the delegates of the Nyeleni Forum for Food Sovereignty reaffirmed their vision of unity that emphasized the right of all peoples to define their own food and agriculture policies and systems, without harming either people or precious natural resources, as Food Sovereignty implies.
That’s why we demand food sovereignty in Europe now.
FULL TEXT: European Declaration on Food Sovereignty