AgriCultures Network - News from our partners
All members publish a quarterly magazine on small-scale sustainable agriculture and agroecology. But we do much more. Below, we update you on our and other activities and programmes.
September 2015: A new multimedia publication explores the meaning and politics of agroecology from social movement perspectives. They are produced by the Centre for Agroecology, Water and Resilience of Coventry University and ILEIA, the Centre for Learning on Sustainable Agriculture.
On August 31 and September 1 2015, representatives from the Senegalese, Indian, Peruvian and Dutch members of the AgriCultures Network visited two farms of a network of 14 rural workers' unions in the state of Paraíba, called 'Polo da Borborema'. AS-PTA, a member of the AgriCultures Network has been working on agroecology in the region since 1993. The international visitors spent one day with women farmers and one day with youth.
July 2015: Like in many other parts of the world, the Netherlands is a country with two realities. On the one hand, for decades policies have been pushing for further industrialisation of agriculture and food. Many farmers find themselves squeezed between the demands of suppliers and supermarkets, and a large number of Dutch farmers have closed business in the past decade. At the same time peasants, citizens and social movements are rising and building agroecological alternatives, creating more autonomy from existing power structures.
July 2015: There is a growing trend of young people without an agricultural background choosing farming as a way of life – this is happening worldwide. Who are these youth, why are they changing their lives and why are they choosing agroecology?
June 2015: On 26 June, in the framework of the United Nations International Year of Soils, the Celebrate Soil, Celebrate Life! congress in Amsterdam aimed to raise public awareness of the central importance of living soil. Positively, the call for a paradigm shift was loud. But more concrete solutions could have been offered.
On 26 June 2015, governments, civil society and academics in Latin America and the Caribbean committed to promoting actions and policies across the region to ‘boost agroecology and food sovereignty’ as a way to strengthen family farming and food security.
May 2015: The key ingredient for healthy soils and healthy crops is soil organic matter. But it has been neglected in recent decades. How could we have forgotten about it? And what is needed to bring it back in the fields and on political agendas? Insights from the AgriCultures Network.
April 2015: Social movements and NGOs in Brazil are calling on their government to anchor agroecology firmly in the national policy agenda for the years to come. They propose that agroecology get a central place in the upcoming Pluri-Annual Investment Plan for 2016-2019.
April 2015: A compelling title for the Global Soil Week that was held this week in Berlin, 19-23 April, 2015. Madeleine Florin participated and represented ILEIA. The organisers did an excellent job as the event created plenty of space for participation by everyone and it was refreshingly diverse. More than 600 people representing 80 different countries were bound together by a belief in the importance of sustainable soil management.
April 2015: Healthy soils contribute to resilient food production. There is a growing number of farmers who have long known this and practice agroecology to improve the health of their soils. In many cases these approaches are being re-learnt and adapted. In the International Year of Soils, the AgriCultures Network explores and celebrates such old and new practices for living soils.
April 2015: “With policies that respond to their needs, small scale farmers hold the key to achieving food security globally. And this requires a shift away from the emphasis on industrial agriculture and integration in global value chains”. This is the main message of ILEIA’s contribution to an ongoing policy consultation by the government of the Netherlands.
March 2015: On the 19th and 20th of March 2015, ILEIA, together with other Dutch organisations, organised a two day gathering about soils. Hanna Kool, an intern at ILEIA, was part of the organising team and shares her impressions here.
March 2015: Between 16 and 21 March, friends and allies of Groundswell International visited our member organisation AS-PTA and the family farmers they work with. The visit was an important opportunity to exchange some of the agroecological knowledge and experience that exist in the Latin American continent, and strengthen regional and international alliances.
March 2015: "We are marching for health, for quality of life, for public policies. We, women, have the capacity to do anything. I have that capacity, as has every one of you here." With these words Marlene Pereira, vice president of the Rural Workers Union of Lagoa Seca, addressed five thousand women who took part in the sixth March for the Lives of Women and Agroecology in Brazil, on the 12th of March.
March 2015: At the end of February, around 300 peasants, fisherfolk, pastoralists, indigenous people and consumer group representatives from all continents gathered in the town of Sélingué in Mali with the aim to articulate their vision of agroecology.