May 28, 2015

Food Sovereignty and Land Grab in Africa

Last Thursday I had the pleasure of attending a panel discussion on Food Sovereignty and Land Grab in Africa. The discussion was co-hosted by Institute for Policy Studies Foreign Policy in Focus (IPS’ FPF), Africa Africa, and Transafrica Forum. While food security has been an interest of mine for a while now, but I was unfamiliar with the concepts of food sovereignty and land grab. Luckily for me, there was a fabulous panel to elucidate. In a nutshell, food sovereignty goes beyond food security in that while food security focuses on the certainty that … [Read more...]

Africans Face Competing Visions of Agricultural Development at a Critical Juncture

A follow up post to the one below, also from the Food First blog.  A little long, but well worth it. Africans Face Competing Visions of Agricultural Development at Critical Juncture Posted May 20th, 2010 by rjonasse By Richard Jonasse, Food First A contest of competing visions over the future of Agriculture is playing out across Sub-Saharan Africa. Farmers' organizations are lining up against an aid regime that threatens to swamp smallholders with purported "solutions" to which these farmers have not assented and do not desire. … [Read more...]

The Slow Food Movement – it's in our hands

Earlier this month, I attended the 2010 Campus Progress National Conference in Washington, D.C. hosted by the Center for American Progress. I was invigorated to see so many hundreds of passionate young people getting together to talk about ways we can influence public policy and address huge issues of our time—such as racism, climate change, and food insecurity. Of particular interest to me was the panel discussion called “The Force of Food,” which highlighted the impact of our current food system on culture, health, and the environment.  The panel … [Read more...]

The Need for Agrarian & Food Policy Reform


"We envision empowered communities everywhere working together democratically to advance a food system that ensures health, justice and dignity for all" - National Family Farm Coalition (NFFC) GMO's, mass produced and overpriced food. Sounds delicious...right? This is the norm of what food has become for our generation. The mass production of agriculture has led to the commodification of our food, making it over priced in the grocery store as well as hurting local farmers. Not only do these expensive veggies hurt our wallets, but could also have a … [Read more...]

In Ending Hunger, What Can (Should?) the U.S. Do?

Earlier this week, I was among an audience of around 100 or so Congressional staffers and non-profit professionals who attended the event "Ending World Hunger: What Can the U.S. Do?" as part of the Wilson Center’s On the Hill panel series. Presented by John Sewell of the Woodrow Wilson Center, the panelists were Ann Tutwiler, coordinator of the USDA's Feed the Future initiative, Jay Branegan, senior staff member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Julie A. Howard, Executive Director of the Partnership to Cut Hunger and Poverty in Africa. The … [Read more...]

Voices from the Other Side of the Road


“Who decides about food policies?” “Who controls food producing resources?” “How is food produced?” “Who has/needs access to food?” For the first time in history, the growing numbers of the hungry has surpassed the one billion mark.  Such numbers pose a huge risk to world peace and security. In order to keep the challenge of food insecurity on top of the international agenda, the FAO convened a World Summit on Food Security this past weekend in Rome. But, while heads of state met in the stately buildings of the UN, just one Metro station away, … [Read more...]

Why the "Global Food Security Act" Just Doesn't Cut It: The Case for Food Sovereignty

The world food crisis—more serious than ever, in light of the global economic crisis—has activists in the development community clamoring for solutions. Nearly 1 billion people worldwide are now classified as “hungry,” and numbers are expected to rise as flows of foreign aid, government assistance, NGO resources, and remittances dry up or are allocated elsewhere. As Secretary Clinton embarks on a 7-nation tour of Africa next week, one can hope that world hunger and food security will be at the forefront of her mind, and long-term, sustainable, and … [Read more...]

Trinidad Dispatch #2: Creating Caribbean Solutions to the Economic Crisis

Trinidad is abuzz with talk of the upcoming 5th Summit of the Americas.  Port of Spain's public transportation schedule has been changed to accommodate the influx of visitors, two giant cruise ships (the summit venues) sit docked in the harbor, and radio hosts take public calls to determine how Trinidad will benefit in the long run. The 5th Summit represents Obama's first opportunity to dialogue with Latin American and Caribbean presidents about issues facing the hemisphere.  With Trinidadians already wearing "I -heart- Obama" t-shirts, hopes are high … [Read more...]