Although the UN has called the Food Systems Summit a “people’s summit”, it marks a departure from past World Food Summits, which developed innovative, inclusive and participatory global food governance mechanisms anchored in human rights. By contrast, the UNFSS follows a multi-stakeholder approach that, while appearing inclusive, ends up privileging agribusiness and food corporations and is conducted in partnership with the World Economic Forum (formed by the world’s top 1000 corporations). The UNFSS has sidelined civil society and and lacks transparency and accountability mechanisms. In response, civil society groups around the world are refusing to participate in the UNFSS and are instead leading parallel events and actions.
The People’s Autonomous Response to the UNFSS in July has argued that the UNFSS detracts from the real solutions needed to tackle the multiple hunger, climate and health crises. The globalized, industrialized food systems advanced at UNFSS fail most people, and the Covid-19 pandemic has worsened the situation. According to the 2021 UN Report on the State of Food Security and Nutrition, the number of chronically undernourished people has risen to 811 million, while almost a third of the world’s population has no access to adequate food. The Global South still reels from Covid-19, unveiling the entrenched structural power asymmetries, fragility and injustice that underpin the predominant food system.
What we need: Food systems and food sovereignty for the people
Food sovereignty: the right of peoples to healthy and culturally appropriate food produced through ecologically sound and sustainable methods, and their right to define their own food and agriculture systems
Equitable and sustainable solutions already exist—and they need more support. There is much to learn from the networks of solidarity and care that people – often the most vulnerable and historically oppressed – have put in place during the pandemic. Currently, 70% of the world gets food from the peasant food web, which works with only 25% of the resources.
We don’t need “sustainable intensification”, “climate-smart agriculture” or ‘nature-positive solutions,” which often greenwash corporate agendas. Millions of smallholder farmers, fishermen, pastoralists, agricultural and rural workers, and entire indigenous communities practice agroecology, a way of life and a form of resistance to an unfair economic system that puts profit before life. Agroecological farming constantly adapts to local needs, customs, soils and climates. As countless experts have attested, agroecology improves nutrition, reduces poverty, contributes to gender justice, combats climate change, and enriches farmland.
Agroecology, unlike industrial agriculture, embraces and encourages diversity—of crops, people, farming methods, and knowledges—to allow for locally-adapted food systems that are responsive to environmental conditions and community needs.
The movement for food sovereignty is united in our diversity and in our shared opposition to centralized, top-down models of decision-making and agricultural production.
Original Source: unfss2021.org
Farmland values hit record highs, pricing out farmers
Anti-tick vaccine drive gives hope to farmers
Dairy farmers in Ankole Sub-region are optimistic that the anti-tick vaccine launched by the government will solve their problem of tick resistance to acaricides.
For the last 10 years, dairy farmers across the country have decried tick resistance to acaricides, which has been ravaging the livestock sector.
Mr Emmanuel Kyeishe, a resident of Rushere in Kiruhura District and dairy farmer with more than 100 head of cattle, says dairy farmers in the cattle corridor have battled the problem of tick resistance for a long time.
“The issue of ticks has been rampant in the cattle corridor to the extent of losing our cows. We spend a lot on treating them because of ticks since they infect animals with several diseases,” he said.
Mr Kyeishe said he loses at least two cows every month to tick-borne diseases like East Coast Fever and heart water.
“I have lost 180 cows in the last five years due to ticks and tick-borne diseases. If they do not die, they get blind and some lose their skin. But if we get a vaccine, it will have saved us a lot,” he said.
Mr Kyeishe added that he has resorted to mixing agrochemicals with acaricides since the available ones on the market are failing.
Mr Jackson Bells Katongole, a dairy farmer in Kashari, Mbarara District, said if the government’s move to have anti-tick vaccine is successful, quality of dairy products would improve.
“A farmer loses at least two to five cows every month and we have resorted to using different concoctions from Tanzania, Rwanda and Kenya because the problem of ticks has made us helpless,” he said.
He added: “We had reached the point of mixing pesticides with acaricides because of tick resistance and in the process our cows have gone blind, lost skin and others died.”
Mr Katongole further said each cow that dies is valued at around Shs2.5 million, which means that a farmer loses Shs5 million every month.
The Mbarara City Veterinary Officer, Dr Andrew Akashaba, said in Mbarara alone, there are about 60,000 head of cattle, mostly exotic breeds which are prone to ticks.
“Most of the exotic breeds of cattle are at a high risk of acquiring ticks and tick borne diseases, which are a major hindrance to livestock development in the cattle corridor,” he said.
Mr Akashaba added that between 2,000 and 3,000 cows die annually in Mbarara alone due to tick-related diseases.
While launching the final clinical trial of anti-tick vaccine manufactured by National Agriculture Research Organisation at Mbarara Zardi on Thursday, the deputy director general and research coordinator, Dr Yona Baguma, assured the farmers that once the vaccine is approved, they will be spraying their cattle against ticks twice in six months as opposed to twice a week.
Original source: Monitor
Farmers fail to access farm inputs on Ministry e-platform
About 3,640 model farmers in Nebbi District, who were registered under the Agricultural Cluster Development Programme (ACDP) to access agricultural inputs on E-voucher, are stuck after failure of the system.
The farmers say the system has affected their planting patterns.
The Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Husbandry under the Agriculture cluster Development Programme (ACDP) introduced the e-voucher system five years ago to enable farmers access agricultural inputs electronically.
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