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La Via Campesina relaunched the "Global Campaign on seeds, a heritage of the peoples at the service of humanity", on the occasion of the international day of actions in defense of the food sovereignty of the peoples and against multinationals.
Peasant seeds are a heritage of the peoples at the service of humanity. They constitute the basis of world food production and allow peasant women and men to produce and consumers and citizens to find a healthy and varied diet. They allow us to resist, preserve our ancestral cultures and defend our peasant identity.
Well, these seeds of life are threatened by rich countries' seed policies, free trade agreements, and agribusiness. Under the pretext of “improving” the productivity of the seeds, agribusiness has created a neoliberal seed system that has homogenized, impoverished and monopolized seeds, causing the loss of three-quarters of their diversity and annihilating a diversity that peoples Thanks to the work of the peasant women and men, it had taken 10,000 years to generate.
Three companies, Monsanto-Bayer, Syngenta-ChemChina and Dupont-Dow, control more than 50% of the world's commercial seeds; seeds that are increasingly being genetically modified in order to be resistant to herbicides and to produce insecticides. Under the leadership of the WTO, the World Bank and the IMF, and through free trade agreements, as well as laws that patent seeds and protect breeders' rights, and UPOV standards, this system of seeds only authorizes the circulation of its own seeds, criminalizing the safeguarding, exchange, donation and sale of local peasant seeds.
The situation is such that male and female peasants have lost many of their local seeds, are sent to prison for defending and exchanging their seed heritage, and risk raids and seizure of the seeds. The use of chemical fertilizers, hybrid seeds and genetically modified organisms developed by multinational companies destroy biodiversity. Citizens have limited access to healthy, varied and good food for their health.
La Via Campesina and its allies are fighting to change the situation. Around the world, La Via Campesina and its member organizations multiply training, education, mutual support and seed exchange efforts. We fight for national laws and international treaties to guarantee the rights of peasants to conserve, use, exchange, sell and protect their seeds from biopiracy and genetic contamination, we write books on the history of seeds, carry out studies and draw maps . We also founded schools of agroecology and organized peasant seed exchange fairs. We exercise our right to self-determination to select the varieties of seeds that we want to plant and reject those that are dangerous in economic, ecological and cultural terms. These are rights enshrined in the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture and in the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Peasants, which has just been adopted by the Human Rights Council in Geneva. It is also the only way to guarantee citizens a healthy diet, the conservation of biodiversity and the achievement of food sovereignty.
With this objective in mind, in 2001 we launched in Rome the International Campaign for Peasant Seeds, heritage of peoples at the service of humanity, in order to promote the recovery of traditional systems of conservation, maintenance and exchange of local seeds and seeds. inalienable collective rights of peasants over their seeds. On October 16, 2018, on the occasion of the World Day of Action in defense of the food sovereignty of the peoples and against multinationals, we will relaunch this campaign and the action "Adopt a seed."
We invite each farmer, peasant family or community to commit to adopt a variety of vegetable or animal seed, to become its guardian, guaranteeing its propagation, reproduction and distribution, as well as to commit to the collective defense of its rights to use, exchange, sell and protect them. In this way, we will weave a great network of peasant seeds that will save those that are now scarce and extend production towards the food sovereignty of the peoples.
By adopting a seed, peasant families preserve their identity and territory and reaffirm their peasant way of life. They vindicate the historical memory and the ancestral culture on the management of seeds, promoting urban and rural ecological agriculture that reproduces the miracle of seeds and the most numerous and best quality foods, flavor and nutritional value.
No government measure should limit the collective rights of peasants to use, exchange and sell their seeds. Free consent between peasant women and men should be applied without restrictions.
Without seeds there is no agriculture, without agriculture there is no food and without food there are no peoples.
We feed our people and build the movement to change the world!
Source: La Via Campesina
[FR / EN] Geneviève Lalumière (Québec) | [email protected] | 00 1 514 577 9265
[FR / EN / ES] Antonio Onorati (Italie) | [email protected] | 00 39 340 821 9456
[FR] Guy Kastler (France) | [email protected] | 00 33 6 03 94 57 21
Send the information on the planned actions to [email protected]
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