Towards food sovereignty: reclaiming autonomous food systems
Michel Pimbert, 2009, IIED, London
Throughout the world, food providers (such as farmers, pastoralists, forest dwellers, and food workers) and new social movements, rather than academia and think tanks, are the prime movers behind a newly emerging food sovereignty policy framework. At its heart, this alternative policy framework for food and agriculture aims to guarantee and protect people’s space, ability, and right to define their own models of production, food distribution, and consumption patterns.
The notion of “food sovereignty” is perhaps best understood as a transformative process that seeks to recreate the democratic realm and regenerate a diversity of autonomous food systems based on equity, social justice, and ecological sustainability. Such a transformation with, by, and for people implies radical changes in five closely interrelated domains: ecological, political, social, technological, and economic. This multimedia ebook explores these processes of change and their implications for policy and practice through a combination of text, photos, films, and sound.
Food Sovereignty: Reconnecting Food, Nature and Community
Annette Desmarais, Hannah Wittman and Nettie Wiebe (Eds.), 2010, $24.99
Advocating a practical, radical change to the way much of our food system currently operates, this book argues that food sovereignty is the means to achieving a system that will provide for the food needs of all people while respecting the principles of environmental sustainability, local empowerment and agrarian citizenship. The current high input, industrialized, market-driven food system fails on all these counts. The UNendorsed goal of food security is becoming increasingly distant as indicated by the growing levels of hunger in the world, especially among marginalized populations in both the North and South. The authors of this book describe the recent emergence and the parameters of an alternative system, food sovereignty, that puts the levers of food control in the hands of those who are both hungry and produce the world’s food – peasants and family farmers, not corporate executives. As the authors show in both conceptual and case study terms, food sovereignty promises not only increased production of food, but also food that is safe, food that reaches those who are in the most need, and agricultural practices that respect the earth.
Forgotten Agricultural Heritage
Reconnecting food systems and sustainable development
Parviz Koohafkan, Miguel A. Altieri; 2017, Routledge, 272 p., £32.99,
Contemporary agriculture is often criticized for its industrial scale, adverse effects on nutrition, rural employment and the environment, and its disconnectedness from nature and culture. Yet there are many examples of traditional smaller scale systems that have survived the test of time and provide more sustainable solutions while still maintaining food security in an era of climate change. This book provides a unique compilation of this forgotten agricultural heritage and is based on objective scientific evaluation and evidence of the value of these systems for present and future generations.
The authors refer to many of these systems as Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS) and show how they are related to the concepts of heritage and the World Heritage Convention. They demonstrate how GIAHS based on family farms, traditional indigenous knowledge and agroecological principles can contribute to food and nutrition security and the maintenance of agro-biodiversity and environmental resilience, as well as sustain local cultures, economies and societies.