Smallholders and agribusiness: boxing match or friendly chat?

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Agriculture is about everyone. How food is produced is of no interest to you unless you’re going to eat,” Nettie Wiebe, La Via Campesina.

All of us eat, so all of us should care about agriculture. The way we tackle this issue, though, depends on which corner we’re in.

If you work in the private sector, you will have very different ideas to a civil society representative. Walking into the side event ‘Who Will and How Will We Feed Humanity?’– I’ll be honest – I was expecting a fistfight between La Via Campesina and Syngenta representatives.

For those of you who are confused, a quick recap: Syngenta is a global Swiss agribusiness that produces agrochemicals and seeds. As of 2014 it was the world’s largest crop chemical producer. La Via Campesina is “an international movement which coordinates peasant organizations of small and middle-scale producers, agricultural workers, rural women, and indigenous communities from Asia, Africa, America, and Europe”.

Their approaches to food and agriculture are in (nearly) complete opposition. Are you still surprised I was expecting a boxing match?

Read the full post on the CFS blog here.

Blogpost by Isabella Coin, #CFS43 Social Reporter – isa.coin(at)gmail.com
Photo: 
Zoë Hoornaert (on Flickr)

This post is part of the live coverage during the 43rd Session of the Committee on World Food Security (CFS), a project GFAR is running in collaboration with CFS. This post is written by two of our social reporters, and represents the authors’ views only.


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