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La Via Campesina

 

La Via Campesina is an international movement which brings together millions of peasants, small and medium-size farmers, landless people, women farmers, indigenous people, immigrants and agricultural workers from around the world. It defends small-scale sustainable agriculture as a way to promote social justice and dignity. It strongly opposes corporate driven agriculture and transnational companies that are destroying people and nature.

 

La Via Campesina comprises about 150 local and national organizations in 70 countries in Africa, Asia, Europe and the Americas. Altogether, it represents about 200 million farmers. It is an autonomous, pluralistic and multicultural movement, independent from any political, economic or other type of affiliation.

 

A group of farmers’ representatives – women and men- from the four continents founded La Via Campesina in 1993 in Mons, Belgium. La Via Campesina is now recognised as a main actor in the food and agricultural debates. It is heard by institutions such as the FAO and the UN Human Rights Council, and is broadly recognized among other social movements from local to global level.

 

The main goal of the movement is to realize food sovereignty and stop the destructive neoliberal process. It is based on the conviction that small farmers, including peasant fishermen, pastoralists and indigenous people, who make up almost half the world's people, are capable of producing food for their communities and feeding the world in a sustainable and healthy way. It puts the aspirations, needs and livelihoods of those who produce, distribute and consume food at the heart of food systems and policies rather than the demands of markets and corporations.

 

Food sovereignty prioritizes local food production and consumption. It gives a country the right to protect its local producers from cheap imports and to control production. It ensures that the rights to use and manage lands, territories, water, seeds, livestock and biodiversity are in the hands of those who produce food and not in those of the corporate sector. Therefore the implementation of genuine agrarian reform is one of the top priorities of the farmer's movement.

 

Women play a crucial role in the Via Campesina work. According to the FAO, women produce 70% of the food on earth but they are marginalized and oppressed by neoliberalism and patriarchy. The movement defends women rights and gender equality at all levels. It struggles against all forms of violence against women.

 

According to La Via Campesina the battle for food sovereignty is the most powerful response to the current food, poverty and climate crises.

 

The movement is funded by the contributions of its members, by private donations and by the financial support of some NGOs, foundations and local and national authorities.

 

 

 
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Properties

Type of initiative Knowledge/advice organization, Action/campaign organization, Information/network organization
Field of work Agriculture, Trade, Politics, Law, Knowledge and information
Date of commencement 1993
Founder(s) Farmers from four continents
Legal form
Continent Asia
Country Indonesia
City Jakarta
One or several keywords that describe your initiative against landgrabing, protecting the rights of small scale farmers and peasants, ecological farming
Publications email newsletters, reports, website
More information
 

Contact person(s)

 

Contact information

Name La Via Campesina
Address Jl. Mampang Prapatan XIV No. 5
Zip/postal code 12790
Place Jakarta Selatan
State/province Jakarta
Country Indonesia
Phone +62-21-7991890
E-mail viacampesina@viacampesina.org
Website www.viacampesina.org

 

 

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