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Trinational Announcement of Peasant Organizations, Farmers, Environmentalists, Unions, Churches, Social Activists, Academics and Journalists From Our Three Countries

The transnational corporations and business organizations that benefit from GM corn and biocides such as glyphosate are strongly pressuring the Mexican government (with support from the U.S. government) to renounce its right to food sovereignty and walk away from the international commitments assumed by the three governments in the “Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework,” which is the strategic plan for the implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity in the period 2022-2030, intended to contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030. https://www.cbd.int/article/cop15-cbd-press-release-final-19dec2022

The demand by corporations and their lobbyists that Mexico reverse the legitimate and legal decisions made in compliance with the spirit of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), as well as international legal frameworks, to protect the world’s center of origin and diversification of maize from contamination by transgenic corn, as well as the gradual but effective elimination of highly hazardous pesticides such as the carcinogenic glyphosate (also known by its brand name RoundUp or Faena), is a true international legal absurdity and an anachronistic approach typical of the last century, contrary to the broad social demands and international commitments of the 21st century.

In December 2022, the governments of the United States, Canada and Mexico, as well as the majority of governments in the world, participated in the fifteenth Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity in Montreal. They agreed on the “Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework” (https://www.unep.org/news-and-stories/statements/adoption-kunming-montreal-global-biodiversityframework-gbf), which establishes four goals and 23 targets. Of those, we highlight only three, which contrast with the irrationality of the corporate demands towards Mexico:

TARGET 7

Reduce pollution risks and the negative impact of pollution from all sources by 2030, to levels that are not harmful to biodiversity and ecosystem functions and services, considering cumulative effects, including: reducing excess nutrients lost to the environment by at least half, including through more efficient nutrient cycling and use; reducing the overall risk from pesticides and highly hazardous chemicals by at least half, including through integrated pest management, based on science, taking into account food security and livelihoods; and also preventing, reducing and working towards eliminating plastic pollution.

TARGET 9

Ensure that the management and use of wild species are sustainable, thereby providing social, economic, and environmental benefits for people, especially those in vulnerable situations and those most dependent on biodiversity, including through sustainable biodiversity-based activities, products and services that enhance biodiversity, and protecting and encouraging customary sustainable use by Indigenous peoples and local communities.

TARGET 10

Ensure that areas under agriculture, aquaculture, fisheries and forestry are managed sustainably, in particular through the sustainable use of biodiversity, including through a substantial increase of the 2 application of biodiversity-friendly practices, such as sustainable intensification, agroecological and other innovative approaches contributing to the resilience and long-term efficiency and productivity of these production systems and to food security, conserving and restoring biodiversity and maintaining nature’s contributions to people, including ecosystem functions and services.

Our organizations, and an increasing number of members of our governments and legislative and judicial bodies, see the goal of trying to put corporate interests above the priorities of respect for Mother Nature, as well as public health, as clearly irrational. Such proposals go against the socioenvironmental needs of the region and the world. Instead, we must build alternative policies for balanced development that should be the priority, in harmony with international law.

WE REJECT PRESSURE BY TRANSNATIONAL CORPORATIONS AND THEIR AGRIBUSINESS ALLIES THAT CONTROL SEEDS AND AGROCHEMICALS.

WE SUPPORT THE POLICY, IN EACH OF OUR COUNTRIES, OF ENCOURAGING THE PRODUCTION OF NON GM MAIZE, WITHOUT GLYPHOSATE OR OTHER SIMILAR BIOCIDES, AS WELL AS THE POLICY OF FAIR AND SUSTAINABLE TRADE.

WE ENCOURAGE GOVERNMENTS TO RAISE THESE ISSUES, TO TAKE EFFECTIVE MEASURES TO COMPLY WITH THE COMMITMENTS ESTABLISHED TO PROTECT BIODIVERSITY AND TO RESPECT THE RIGHT OF PEOPLES TO STRENGTHEN THEIR SOVEREIGNTY AND FOOD SECURITY.

WE REITERATE OUR EXHORTATION TO THE GOVERNMENT OF MEXICO TO STAND FIRM IN THE FACE OF PRESSURE FROM THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT AND TRANSNATIONAL INTERESTS.

Ciudad de México

MEXICO

Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio (RMALC)
Campaña Nacional Sin Maíz No hay País
Asociación Nacional de Empresas Comercializadoras de Productores del Campo, A.C. (ANEC)
Red de Acción sobre Plaguicidas y Alternativas en México (RAPAM)
Movimiento Campesino, Indígena, Afromexicano, Plan de Ayala Siglo XXI. (MCIAPASXXI)
Agrónomos Democráticos.
Central de Organizaciones Campesinas y Populares (COCyP).
Unión Campesina Democrática (UCD).
Promotora de Gestión de Enlace para el Desarrollo Rural (PROGEDER).
Central Independiente de Obreros, Agrícolas y Campesinos (CIOAC-JDLD).
Sindicato de Trabajadores del INCA Rural (STINCA).
Asociación de Consumidores Orgánicos.
Fundación Semillas de Vida.
Guerreros Verdes, A.C.
FIAN México
Grupo de Estudios Ambientales (GEA)
Fundación Semillas de Vida.
Colectivo Zacahuitzco
Frente Autentico del Trabajo (FAT)
Tortillería Blanquita Mejía
Instituto de Estudios para el Desarrollo Rural Maya AC
Mercado de la Tierra Toluca
Moms Across America de EU
Grupo Moojk Kaaky, Tlahuiltotepec, Oaxaca.
Centro Agroecológico Mecayapan.
Sihuatayolme de Mecayapan.
Agroproductores de la Sierra de Santa Marta SPR de RL de CV.
Chiltik Tayol de Mecayapan.
Tianguis Agroecológico de Xalapa y red de agricultura urbana y Periurbana de Xalapa.
Colectivo Zacahuitzco
Fundación Tortilla
Organización Nacional de Licenciados en Desarrollo Sustentable, S. C.
Proyecto de Desarrollo Rural Integra V. Guerrero A.C. (Grupo V. Guerrero de Tlaxcala)
Alimento Sano Ciudad Guzmán, Jalisco.
Red de Coordinación en Biodiversidad, A. C, Costa Rica
Cooperativa Despensa Solidaria – Cdmx
Alimento Sano Ciudad Guzmán, Jalisco.
Centro de Derechos Humanos “Fray Francisco de Vicoria Q.P. A.C.
Observatorio del Derecho a la Salud
Centro de Capacitación en Ecología y Salud para Campesinos (CCESC)
Rebiosfera A.C.
Espacio de Encuentro de las Culturas, A.C.
Tlalpantur Coop.
Maak Raiz Artesanal S.C. de R.L. de CV
Cristianas ComprometidasUnión de Redes Solidarias Totoquihuatzin SC de RL de CV
Promotores de Nuestras Raíces
Agromas S.C.
Radio Huayacocotla la Voz Campesina
Comité de Derechos Humanos Sierra Norte de Veracruz
Carnaval del Maíz
Haciendo Milpa, A.C.
Centro Agroecológico Mecayapan.
Sihuatayolme de Mecayapan.
Agroproductores de la Sierra de Santa Marta SPR de RL de CV.
Chiltik Tayol de Mecayapan.
Honey Authenticity Network
Alianza Nacional Apícola
Biopakal S.A.P.I. de C.V.
Colectivo de comunidades mayas de los Chenes y
Alianza Maya por las abejas de la Península de Yucatán Kabnalo’on
Red Socio-Ambiental
Ts’atai, Mercadito y Cultura
Tianguis Alternativo de Puebla
Red Tsiri (Michoacan)
Red de Comunicadoras y Comunicadores Boca de Polen
Promotora de Gestión y Enlace para el Desarrollo Rural, A.C. (PROGEDER)
Frente en Defensa del Maíz, Colima
Mercado de productores capital verde.
Espacio de Encuentro de las Culturas Originarias, A.C.
Red de Maíz de la Ciudad de México.
Alianza por Nuestra Tortilla,
Consejo Rector de la tortilla tradicional,
Fundación tortilla.
Asociación Etnobiológica Mexicana
Sociedad Latinoamericana de Etnobiología
Sociedad Mexicana de Agroecología
Ecocomunidades, A.C.
Red Ecologista Autónoma de la Cuenca de México

Individual signers

Catherine Marielle
Alma Piñeyro Nelson
Ricardo Turrent Alonso
Tamara Circuit
Jesse Circuit
Linette Galeana
Marisa Gonzlez de la Vega
María Garate
Jimena Garate
Miguel Ángel Damián Huato
Ing. Francisco Leyva Gómez, investigador agrícola
Dr. Primo Sánchez Morales, Profesor Investigador T.C.
Dr Carlos Avila Bello
Dr. Ramón Mariaca
Agustín Bernal Inguanzo

CANADA

Canadian Biotechnology Action Network
Common Frontiers – Canada
Council of Canadians
GE Free Comox Valley
Hamilton Chapter of the Council of Canadians
Kawartha Highlands and Lakes Chapter of the Council of Canadians
National Farmers Union – Canada
Northumberland Coalition For Social Justice
Public Service Alliance of Canada
Trade Justice Group of the Northumberland Chapter of the Council of Canadians

UNITED STATES

ActionAid USA
Agricultural Justice Project
Agroecology Research Action Collective
Alianza Nacional de Campesinas, Inc.
Center for Food Safety
Community Alliance for Global Justice/AGRA Watch
Community to Community Development
Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy
Institute for Policy Studies Global Economy Program
Family Farm Defenders
Farmworker Association of Florida
Food in Neighborhoods Community Coalition
Friends of the Earth USA
Global Justice Ecology Project
Grassroots International
Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns
National Family Farm Coalition
Northeast Organic Farming Association-Interstate Council
Northeast Organic Farming Association-New Hampshire
Pesticide Action Network of North America
Public Citizen
Real Food Media
Rural Coalition
US Food Sovereignty Allianc

Comunicado Trinacional de organizaciones campesinas, agricultores, ambientalistas, sindicatos, iglesias, activistas sociales, académicos y periodistas de nuestros tres países

Las empresas transnacionales y organizaciones empresariales que se benefician del maíz transgénico y de los agrotóxicos como el glifosato, estan presionando fuertemente a nuestro gobierno, y demandándole al de los EEUU para que en la próxima reunión del T-MEC, México renuncie a su derecho a la soberanía alimentaria y se aleje de los compromisos internacionales asumidos por los tres gobiernos en el llamado “Marco Global de Biodiversidad de Kunming-Montreal”, que es el plan estratégico para la aplicación del Convenio sobre la Diversidad Biológica en el periodo 2022–2030 , y contribuir al logro de los Objetivos del Desarrollo Sostenible al 2030. https://www.cbd.int/article/cop15-cbd-press-release-final-
19dec2022

La demanda de las corporaciones y sus cabilderos para que México dé marcha atrás a las legítimas y legales decisiones tomadas con respeto al espíritu del T-MEC, lo mismo que del marco del derecho internacional, de proteger de la contaminación por maíz transgénico, el Centro de Origen y Diversificación de Maíces del mundo, lo mismo que la eliminación gradual pero efectiva de plaguicidas altamente peligrosos como el cancerígeno glifosato (también conocido por su nombre comercial como RoundUp o Faena), es un verdadero despropósito jurídico internacional y un enfoque anacrónico propio del siglo pasado, contrario a la amplia demanda social y a los compromisos internacionales del siglo XXI.
En diciembre de 2022 los gobiernos de Estados Unidos, de Canadá y de México, lo mismo que la absoluta mayoría de gobiernos en el mundo, celebraron en Montreal, la decimoquinta Conferencia de las Partes del Convenio sobre Diversidad Biológica y acordaron el Marco Global de Biodiversidad de Kunming-Montreal” (https://www.unep.org/news-and-stories/statements/adoption-kunming-montreal-global-biodiversity-framework-gbf); que establece cuatro objetivos y 23 metas de los que destacamos sólo tres, que contrastan con la irracionalidad de las demandas corporativas hacia México:

OBJETIVO 7
Reducir los riesgos de contaminación y el impacto negativo de la contaminación de todas las
fuentes, para 2030, a niveles que no sean dañinos para la biodiversidad y las funciones y
servicios de los ecosistemas, considerando los efectos acumulativos, que incluyen: reducir el
exceso de nutrientes perdidos en el medio ambiente al menos a la mitad, incluso a través de
ciclo y uso de nutrientes; reducir el riesgo general de los plaguicidas y los productos químicos
altamente peligrosos en al menos la mitad, incluso mediante el manejo integrado de plagas,
basado en la ciencia, teniendo en cuenta la seguridad alimentaria y los medios de
subsistencia; y también prevenir, reducir y trabajar para eliminar la contaminación plástica.

OBJETIVO 9
Garantizar que la gestión y el uso de las especies silvestres sean sostenibles, proporcionando así beneficios sociales, económicos y ambientales para las personas, especialmente aquellas en situaciones vulnerables y las que más dependen de la biodiversidad, incluso a través de actividades, productos y servicios sostenibles basados en la biodiversidad que mejoren la biodiversidad. y proteger y fomentar el uso sostenible consuetudinario por parte de los pueblos indígenas y las comunidades locales.
OBJETIVO 10
Garantizar que las áreas dedicadas a la agricultura, la acuicultura, la pesca y la silvicultura se gestionen de forma sostenible, en particular mediante el uso sostenible de la biodiversidad, incluso mediante un aumento sustancial de la aplicación de prácticas respetuosas con la biodiversidad, como la intensificación sostenible, la agroecología y otros enfoques innovadores que contribuyan a la resiliencia y la eficiencia y productividad a largo plazo de estos sistemas de producción y la seguridad alimentaria, conservando y restaurando la biodiversidad y manteniendo las contribuciones de la naturaleza a las personas, incluidas las funciones y los servicios de los ecosistemas.
Para nuestras organizaciones , e incluso para crecientes miembros de nuestros gobiernos y órganos legislativos y judiciales, resulta evidente el irracional propósito de tratar de poner los intereses corporativos por encima de las prioridades de respeto a la madre naturaleza, lo mismo que a la salud pública. Y aún más, de ir a contracorriente de la necesidad socioambiental de la región y del mundo, de construir políticas alternativas para el desarrollo equilibrado que debería ser la prioridad, en armonía con el derecho internacional.

● RECHAZAMOS LAS PRESIONES DE LAS CORPORACIONES
TRANSNACIONALES QUE CONTROLAN LAS SEMILLAS Y AGROTÓXICOS
Y DE SUS ALIADOS AGROEMPRESARIALES.
● APOYAMOS LA POLÍTICA, EN CADA UNO DE NUESTROS PAÍSES, DE
APOYO A LA PRODUCCIÓN DE MAÍZ NO TRANSGÉNICO, SIN GLIFOSATO,
U OTROS AGROTÓXICOS SIMILARES, ASÍ COMO LA POLÍTICA DE
COMERCIO JUSTO Y SUSTENTABLE.
● ALENTAMOS A LOS GOBIERNOS A LEVANTAR LA MIRA, A TOMAR
MEDIDAS EFECTIVAS PARA CUMPLIR CON LOS COMPROMISOS
ESTABLECIDOS PARA PROTEGER LA BIODIVERSIDAD Y RESPETAR EL
DERECHO DE LOS PUEBLOS A FORTALECER SU SOBERANIA Y
SEGURIDAD ALIMENTARIA.
● REITERAMOS EL EXHORTO AL GOBIERNO DE MÉXICO PARA QUE SE
MANTENGA FIRME ANTE LAS PRESIONES DEL GOBIERNO DE LOS
ESTADOS UNIDOS Y LOS INTERESES DE LAS TRANSNACIONALES.

Ciudad de México, 8 de enero de 2023.

Contacto de Red u organización civil responsable de cada país:
● MÉXICO: Dr. Alejandro Villamar RMALC alermalc@rmalc.org . 5626 3883 11
● CANADÁ: Dr. Nikolas Barry-Shaw, Council of Canadians – Le Conseil des
Canadiens. 613-233-2773, 1-800-387-7177. nbarryshaw@canadians.org
● EEUU: Dra Karen Hansen-Khun, IATP khansenkuhn@iatp.org | 202-543-8602

ORGANIZACIONES:
MÉXICO
1. Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio (RMALC)
2. Campaña Nacional Sin Maíz No hay País
3. Asociación Nacional de Empresas Comercializadoras de Productores del Campo
A.C. (ANEC)
4. Red de Acción sobre Plaguicidas y Alternativas en México (RAPAM)
5. Movimiento Campesino, Indígena, Afromexicano, Plan de Ayala Siglo XXI
(MCIAPASXXI)
6. Agrónomos Democráticos
7. Central de Organizaciones Campesinas y Populares (COCyP)
8. Unión Campesina Democrática (UCD)
9. Promotora de Gestión de Enlace para el Desarrollo Rural (PROGEDER)
10. Central Independiente de Obreros, Agrícolas y Campesinos (CIOAC-JDLD)
11. Sindicato de Trabajadores del INCA Rural (STINCA)
12. Asociación de Consumidores Orgánicos
13. Fundación Semillas de Vida
14. Guerreros Verdes, A.C.
15. FIAN México
16. Grupo de Estudios Ambientales (GEA)
17. Colectivo Zacahuitzco
18. Frente Auténtico del Trabajo (FAT)
19. Tortillería Blanquita Mejía
20. Instituto de Estudios para el Desarrollo Rural Maya
21. Mercado de la Tierra, Toluca
22. Moms Across America de EU
23. Grupo Moojk Kaaky, Tlahuiltotepec, Oaxaca
24. Centro Agroecológico, Mecayapan
25. Sihuatayolme de Mecayapan
26. Agroproductores de la Sierra de Santa Marta SPR de RL de CV.
27. Chiltik Tayol de Mecayapan
28. Tianguis Agroecológico de Xalapa
29. Red de agricultura urbana y Periurbana de Xalapa
30. Fundación Tortilla

31. Organización Nacional de Licenciados en Desarrollo Sustentable, S. C.
32. Proyecto de Desarrollo Rural Integra V. Guerrero A.C. (Grupo V. Guerrero de
Tlaxcala)
33. Alimento Sano Ciudad Guzmán, Jalisco
34. Red de Coordinación en Biodiversidad, A. C, Costa Rica
35. Cooperativa Despensa Solidaria – Cdmx
36. Centro de Derechos Humanos “Fray Francisco de Vicoria O.P.” A.C.
37. Observatorio del Derecho a la Salud
38. Centro de Capacitación en Ecología y Salud para Campesinos (CCESC)
39. Rebiosfera A.C.
40. Tlalpantur Coop.
41. Maak Raiz Artesanal S.C. de R.L. de CV
42. Cristianas Comprometidas
43. Unión de Redes Solidarias Totoquihuatzin SC de RL de CV
44. Promotores de Nuestras Raíces
45. Agromas S.C.
46. Radio Huayacocotla “La Voz Campesina
47. Comité de Derechos Humanos Sierra Norte de Veracruz
48. Carnaval del Maíz
49. Haciendo Milpa, A.C.
50. Honey Authenticity Network
51. Alianza Nacional Apícola
52. Biopakal S.A.P.I. de C.V.
53. Colectivo de Comunidades Mayas de los Chenes
54. Alianza Maya por las abejas de la Península de Yucatán Kabnalo’on
55. Red Socio-Ambiental
56. Ts’atai, Mercadito y Cultura
57. Tianguis Alternativo de Puebla
58. Red Tsiri (Michoacan)
59. Red de Comunicadoras y Comunicadores Boca de Polen
60. Frente en Defensa del Maíz, Colima
61. Mercado de Productores Capital Verde
62. Espacio de Encuentro de las Culturas Originarias, A.C.
63. Red de Maíz de la Ciudad de México
64. Alianza por Nuestra Tortilla
65. Consejo Rector de la Tortilla Tradicional
66. Asociación Etnobiológica Mexicana
67. Sociedad Latinoamericana de Etnobiología
68. Sociedad Mexicana de Agroecología
69. Ecocomunidades, A.C.
70. Red Ecologista Autónoma de la Cuenca de México
71. Colectiva del Día del Maíz en la Escuela Nacional de Trabajo Social, UNAM,
Ciudad de México
72. Observatorio del Derecho a la Alimentación “¿Qué Comemos?”, Jalisco
73. Feria del Maíz, Amealco de Bonfil, Querétaro
74. Legado Alimentos Solidarios y Sustentables, Tepoztlán, Morelos
75. Cooperativa de Consumo Consciente Milpa

76. Colectivo Ahuejote, Ciudad de México
77. Tianguis Agroecológico y Artesanal “Comida Sana y Cercana”, Chiapas
78. Feria de Productores de Guadalajara
79. Mujeres de Colores, S.C.
80. UJM Pro Derechos Humanos, A.C.
81. Colectivo Yo Soy Maíz
82. GMO FREE California
83. GMO/Toxin Free USA
84. Pax Natura Foundation, Salt Lake City, Utah
85. Label GMOs
A título personal:
1. Catherine Marielle
2. Alma Piñeyro Nelson
3. Ricardo Turrent Alonso
4. Tamara Circuit
5. Jesse Circuit
6. Linette Galeana
7. Marisa Gonzlez de la Vega
8. María Garate
9. Jimena Garate
10. Miguel Ángel Damián Huato
11. Ing. Francisco Leyva Gómez, investigador agrícola
12. Dr. Primo Sánchez Morales, Profesor Investigador T.C.
13. Dr Carlos Avila Bello
14. Dr. Ramón Mariaca
15. Agustín Bernal Inguanzo
16. Mariana Ortega Ramírez
17. Mercedes López Martínez
18. Jorge González de la Vega
19. Liliana Vazquez Roa
20. Jesús Ramirez Funes
21. Médico Pediatra Michelle Perro
CANADÁ
1. Canadian Biotechnology Action Network
2. Common Frontiers – Canada
3. Council of Canadians
4. GE Free Comox Valley
5. Hamilton Chapter of the Council of Canadians
6. Kawartha Highlands and Lakes Chapter of the Council of Canadians
7. National Farmers Union – Canada
8. Northumberland Coalition For Social Justice
9. Public Service Alliance of Canada
10. Trade Justice Group of the Northumberland Chapter of the Council of Canadians

ESTADOS UNIDOS
1. ActionAid USA
2. Agricultural Justice Project
3. Agroecology Research Action Collective
4. Alianza Nacional de Campesinas, Inc.
5. Center for Food Safety
6. Community Alliance for Global Justice/AGRA Watch
7. Community to Community Development
8. Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy
9. Institute for Policy Studies Global Economy Program
10. Family Farm Defenders
11. Farmworker Association of Florida
12. Food in Neighborhoods Community Coalition
13. Friends of the Earth USA
14. Global Justice Ecology Project
15. Grassroots International
16. Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns
17. National Family Farm Coalition
18. Northeast Organic Farming Association-Interstate Council
19. Northeast Organic Farming Association-New Hampshire
20. Pesticide Action Network of North America
21. Public Citizen
22. Real Food Media
23. Rural Coalition
24. US Food Sovereignty Alliance

‘Corporate Colonization’: Small Producers Boycott Un Food Summit

Hundreds of civil society groups, academics and social movements are boycotting the first UN global food summit amid growing anger that the agenda has been hijacked by an opaque web of corporate interests.

Called the people’s summit by UN organisers, groups representing thousands of small-scale farmers and Indigenous communities, which produce 70% of the world’s food through sustainable agriculture, are among those to withdraw from Thursday’s event saying their knowledge and experience has been ignored.

The declaration, signed by about 600 groups and individuals, states: “[We] reject the ongoing corporate colonization of food systems and food governance under the facade of the United Nations Food Systems Summit … The struggle for sustainable, just and healthy food systems cannot be unhooked from the realities of the peoples whose rights, knowledge and livelihoods have gone unrecognized and disrespected.”

Some have criticized the prominence of corporations, such as Nestlé, Tyson and Bayer, in the summit’s efforts to identify food system solutions.

KEEP READING ON THE GUARDIAN

Un enero negro para la agroindustria: OMG rechazados en tres continentes

Es un enero negro para los lobbistas del agronegocio y sus grupos de interés. México, Perú y Tanzania cerraron las puertas a los OGM, mientras que el gobierno italiano fue presionado por una fuerte campaña de la sociedad civil, no sólo para confirmar la prohibición a las generaciones previas de OGM, sino también a las nuevas generaciones incluyendo las Nuevas Técnicas de Cultivo (NBTs). Estos avances pueden considerarse un éxito para todos los agricultores y movimientos de la sociedad civil que luchan por mantener sus semillas y su soberanía alimentaria a salvo de las multinacionales.  De lo contrario, al imponer los OGM, las empresas pondrían a los agricultores y los consumidores a su merced al obtener derechos de propiedad sobre las semillas.

Para frenar este esfuerzo, el 1 de enero de 2021 comenzó a regir un  Decreto Presidencial en México para iniciar la eliminación del «uso, adquisición, distribución, promoción e importación» de glifosato, con un período de transición hasta enero de 2025.

CONTINUE LEYENDO EN BIODIVERSIDADLA

One Empire Over Seed: Control Over the World’s Seed Banks

Since the onset of the Neolithic Revolution some 10.000 years ago, farmers and communities have worked to improve yield, taste, nutritional and other qualities of seeds. They have expanded and passed on knowledge about health impacts and healing properties of plants as well as about the peculiar growing habits of plants and interaction with other plants and animals, soil and water. The free exchange of seed among farmers has been the basis to maintaining biodiversity and food security.

A great seed and biodiversity piracy is underway, not just by corporations — which through mergers are becoming fewer and larger— but also by super rich billionaires whose wealth and power open doors to their every whim. Leading the way is Microsoft mogul, Bill Gates.

When the Green Revolution was brought into India and Mexico, farmers’ seeds were “rounded-up” from their fields and locked in international institutions, to be used to breed green revolution varieties engineered to respond to chemical inputs.1

The International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) in the Philippines and the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Centre (CIMMYT), were the first to roundup the diversity from farmers’ fields and replace it with chemical monocultures of rice, wheat, and corn. Others quickly followed.

This hijacking of farmers’ seeds is best highlighted with the shameful removal of India’s pre-eminent rice research scientist Dr. R.H. Richaria, as the head of India’s Central Rice Research Institute (CRRI) in Cuttack, Orissa, which housed the largest collection of rice diversity in the world, for refusing to allow the IRRI in the Philippines to pirate the collection out of India. With his removal at the behest of the World Bank, Indian peasant intellectual property was hijacked to the IRRI in the Philippines which later became part of the newly created Consultative Group of International Agriculture Research (CGIAR).2

Farmers’ seed heritage was held in the private seed banks of CGIAR, a consortium of 15 international agricultural research centers, controlled by the World Bank, the Rockefeller and Ford Foundations, as well as of course the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), which since 2003, has poured more than $720 million into the CGIAR centres. CGIAR gene banks presently manage 768,576 accessions of farmer’ seeds. Taken together, CGIAR gene banks represent the largest and most widely used collections of crop diversity in the world.3

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation operates a bit like the World Bank, using its financial power and prowess to take control of agriculture and influence government and institutional agricultural policies. By far the largest funder of the CGIAR, Gates has successfully accelerated the transfer of research and seeds from scientific research institutions to commodity-based corporations, centralizing and facilitating the pirating of intellectual property and seed monopolies through intellectual property laws and seed regulations.

The urgency with which this restructuring of CGIAR and centralization of control is being done is reflected in the IPES Food open letter of 21 July 2020 as follows: “The process now underway to reform the CGIAR is therefore imperative and of major public interest. The ‘One CGIAR’ process seeks to merge the CGIAR’s 15 legally independent but cooperating centres, headquartered in 15 countries, into one legal entity. The impetus has come from some of its biggest funders, notably the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the World Bank, and the US and UK governments.”4

The aim of “One CGIAR”, overseen by “One CGIAR Common Board’ is to merge it to become part of “One Agriculture”, aka “Gates Ag One” – Gates’ latest move in controlling the world’s seed supply.5 Gates has indicated he will more than double the CGIAR present budget, from $850 million to $2 billion a year.

Despite the long-recognized failure of the Green Revolution in India and Mexico, in 2006 Gates launched AGRA, the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa. The folly of imposing this failed technology in Africa is well documented in the two following articles by Nicoletta Dentico and Tim Wise.

The Seed Freedom movement has been calling for the CGIAR gene banks to return these stolen farmers varieties back to the farmers. The lessons of the Green Revolution since the 1960’s have shown us that the chemical path of monocultures has undermined Earth’s capacity to support life and food production by destroying biodiversity, soil and water67 as well as contributing to climate change.8 It has dispossessed small farmers through debt for external inputs. And it has undermined food and nutritional security.9 The experience of the last half century has made clear that Seed Sovereignty, Food Sovereignty and Knowledge Sovereignty is the only viable future of food and farming.

Besides taking control of the seeds of farmers in the CGIAR seed banks, Gates (along with the Rockefeller Foundation) is investing heavily in collecting seeds from across the world and storing them in the Svalbard Global Seed Vault in the Arctic archipelago – aka the Doomsday Vault – created to collect and hold a global collection of the world’s seeds. It is in association with the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) and the Crop Trust.10

The Crop Trust, based in Germany, funds and coordinates the Svalbard Seed Vault. In addition to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, its funders include the Poison Cartel adherents CropLife Dupont/ Pioneer Hi-bred, KWS SAAT AG, and Syngent AG.

The largest numbers of accessions stored in the Seed Vault are varieties of rice, wheat, and barley crops; more than 150,000 samples of wheat and rice, and close to 80,000 samples of Barley. Other well represented crops are sorghum, phaseolus bean species, maize, cowpea, soybean, kikuyu grass and chickpea.

Crops such as potatoes, peanuts, cajanus beans, oats and rye, alfalfa, the cereal hybrid Triticosecale and Brassica’s are represented by between 10,000 and 20,000 seed samples.11

CROP TRUST DONORS

DONORS RECEIVED US$
Australia 20,165,706
Bundesverband Deutscher Planzenzuechter 25,735
CropLife International 43,726
Czech Republic 40,000
Dupont/ Pioneer  Hi-bred 2,000,000
Egypt 25,000
Ethiopia 25,000
Gates Foundation/UN Foundation 8,003,118
Germany 50,726,348
India 456,391
International Seed Federation 80,785
Ireland 4,144,250
KWS SAAT AG 35,589
Norway 31,491,161
Netherlands 489,000
New Zealand 1,453,800
Republic of Korea 442,556
Slovak Republic 20,000
Spain 2,629,650
Sweden 11,886,620
Switzerland 10,992,704
Syngenta AG 1,000,000
United Kingdom 19,468,582
United States – before Farm Bill 42,825,073
United States – US Farm Bill* 11,585,120
Sub Total 220,055,915
Concessional Loan ** 59,055,611
Sub Total 59,055,611
Grand Total 279,105,526

Source: ‘Our Donors’. Crop Trust, https://www.croptrust.org/about-us/donors/.

It should come as no surprise that Gates is also funding Diversity Seek (DivSeek), a global project launched in 2015 to map the genetic data of the peasant diversity of seeds held in gene banks to then take patents on these seeds through genomic mapping.12 Seven million crop accessions are in public seed banks.

Biopiracy is carried out through the convergence of information technology and biotechnology where patents are taken on seeds through “mapping” their genomes and genome sequences.

While living seed needs to evolve “in situ”, patents on seed genomes can be taken from seed “ex situ. DivSeek is designed to “mine” and extract the data in the seed to “censor” out the commons. In effect it robs the peasants of their seeds and knowledge, it robs the seed of its integrity and diversity, it erases evolutionary history and the seed’s link to the soil, reducing it to a simple “code”. This ‘genetic colonialism’ is an enclosure of the genetic commons.13

The participating institutions in DivSeek are the CGIAR nodes and ‘public’ universities like Cornell and Iowa State, which are being increasingly privatized by the biotechnology industry as well as the Gates Foundation. BMGF funds Cornell’s Alliance for Science, the corporate worlds’ pseudo-science propaganda outlet while Iowa State is the institution promoting the unethical human feeding trials of GMO bananas. Other Gates-funded DivSeek partners are the African Agricultural Technology Foundation and Africa-Brazil Agricultural Innovation Marketplace developed by the Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation (Embrapa).14

Through a new ‘front’ corporation, Editas Medicine,15 BMGF is investing in a one-year-old experimental genetic engineering tool for gene editing, CRISPR-Cas9. Though the technology itself is immature and inaccurate, it has become a gold rush for new patents. The language of “gene editing” and “educated guesses” is creeping into scientific discourse.

Piracy of common genomic data of millions of plants bred by peasants is termed “big data”. Big data however is not knowledge, it is not even information. It is ‘privateered’ data, pirated and privatised.

Seeds are not just germplasm. They are living, self-organizing entities, subjects of evolution, history, culture, and relationships.

In the 1980s, Monsanto led the push for GMOs and patents on seed and life. Today the flag bearer is Bill Gates. In a nutshell: one billionaire given free access to use his wealth to bypass all international treaties and multilateral governance structures to help global corporations highjack the biodiversity and wealth of peasants by financing unscientific and undemocratic processes such as DivSeek, and to unleash untested technologies such as the CRISPR technology on humanity.

Over the last two decades, thousands of concerned citizens and organizations have taken action and written laws to protect the biodiversity of the planet and the rights of farmers to seed, and the rights of consumers to safety, among them, the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD); the Cartagena Biosafety Protocol to the CBD; and the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources Treaty for Food and Agriculture (ITPGRFA).

This article is extracted from Navdanya International Global Citizens’ Report “Gates to a Global Empire“, which was presented on October 14th, 2020, through an online event with the authors. The report gathers evidence and throws light on the dangers of philanthrocapitalism, which is boosting the corporate takeover of our seed, agriculture, food, knowledge and global health systems, manipulating information and eroding our democracies. Contributors to the Seed and Biopiracy sections  outline how Bill Gates and his foundation routinely undermine international treaties created to protect biodiversity, farmers rights, and the sovereignty of countries and communities of their seed and biodiversity wealth.


1 Shiva, V. (1991). The Violence of the Green Revolution: Third World Agriculture, Ecology, and Politics. Other India Press. https://books.google.it/books?id=jPNRPgAACAAJ

2 Alvares, Claude. “The Great Gene Robbery.” Vijayvaani.Com, January 13, 2012. https://www.vijayvaani.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?aid=2137

3 “CGIAR Genebank Platform.” CGIAR. https://www.cgiar.org/the-genebank-platform/

4 IPES food. “OPEN LETTER | ‘One CGIAR’ with Two Tiers of Influence?”, July 21, 2020. http://www.ipes-food.org/pages/OneGGIAR

5 Shiva, V., Anilkumar, P., & Ahluwalia, U. (2020). Ag one: Recolonisation of agriculture. Navdanya/RFSTE. https://navdanyainternational.org/publications/ag-one-recolonisation-of-agriculture/

6 IPBES. “UN Report: Nature’s Dangerous Decline ‘Unprecedented’; Species Extinction Rates ‘Accelerating.’” UN | Sustainable Development, May 6, 2019. https://www.un.org/sustainabledevelopment/blog/2019/05/nature-decline-unprecedented-report

7 FAO Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture. “The State of the World’s Biodiversity for Food and Agriculture 2019,” 2019. http://www.fao.org/state-of-biodiversity-for-food-agriculture/en

8 “Land Is a Critical Resource, IPCC Report Says”. IPCC, August 8, 2019. https://www.ipcc.ch/2019/08/08/land-is-a-critical-resource_srccl/

9 El Hage Scialabba, Nadia. “Feeding the Word: Delusion, False Promises and Attacks of Industrial Agriculture.” Navdanya International, December 7, 2019. https://navdanyainternational.org/publications/feeding-the-word-delusion-false-promises-and-attacks-of-industrial-agriculture/

10 “India Deposit to the Svalbard Global Seed Vault.” Crop Trust, May 15, 2014. https://www.croptrust.org/blog/india-deposit-svalbard-global-seed-vault/

11 Mooney, Chris. “Why the World Is Storing so Many Seeds in a ‘Doomsday’ Vault.” Washington Post, April 15, 2016. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2016/04/15/why-the-world-is-spending-half-a-billion-dollars-to-protect-humble-seeds/

12 “Two contributions to an integrated, global, accession-level information system for ex situ conservation” | Input Paper to the ITPGRFA Consultation on the Global Information System on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (COGIS-PGRFA) Provided by: The Global Crop Diversity Trust. January 2015. IT/COGIS-1/15/Inf.4.a5. http://www.fao.org/3/a-be678e.pdf

13 “‘DivSeek Initiative’ Loses Support of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture.” International Planning Committee for Food Sovereignty (IPC), February 28, 2017. https://www.foodsovereignty.org/divseek-initiative-loses-support-international-treaty-plant-genetic-resources-food-agriculture/

14 Shiva, V., & Shiva, K. (2020). Oneness Vs. The 1 Percent: Shattering Illusions, Seeding Freedom. CHELSEA GREEN PUB. https://books.google.it/books?id=4TmTzQEACAAJ

15 Herper, Matthew. “Bill Gates And 13 Other Investors Pour $120 Million Into Revolutionary Gene-Editing Startup.” Forbes, August 10, 2015. Accessed September 8, 2020. https://www.forbes.com/sites/matthewherper/2015/08/10/bill-gates-and-13-other-investors-pour-120-million-into-revolutionary-gene-editing-startup/

How Colombia’s Small Farmers Contribute to Resilience and Food Sovereignty in Post-Conflict and COVID-19 Pandemic Times

By Ana Prada

BOGOTA, COLOMBIA – In his book, “Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed“, Jared Diamond analyzes why certain societies prevail and others collapse, and explains how the decline of some, such as the Mayan and the Easter Island civilizations, resulted from the  mismanagement of nature. 

Indeed, the way societies manage their natural resources largely defines their future, according to Diamond.  The abundance of resources and successful adaptation to climate change, together with the correct decision-making by a society’s leaders, are some of the factors that determine a society’s ability to survive over time.

Conversely, the abuse of environmental resources and exploitative agricultural production systems can lead a society to collapse.

Socio-environmental conflicts are not foreign to the Colombian reality. The unequal distribution of land and territory has given rise to Colombian armed conflict. The socio-environmental confrontations in Colombia date back to the time of the Spanish conquest.  However, the trigger for the armed conflict occurred in 1948, with the assassination of political leader Jorge Eliécer Gaitán. 

In 1948, the country was ruled by conservatives and landowners, and was totally polarized between extreme poverty and wealth. Thus, one of the longest-running armed conflicts in recent world history was born. It was not until 2016 that the Peace Agreements were signed between the National Government and the extinct guerrilla of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC).

Initially, the guerrillas were driven by political ideals. But later, toward the end of the 1970s, with the arrival and subsequent consolidation of drug trafficking, the conflict became a business matter. The search for concentration of land by the various sides left the Colombian small farmers in the middle, and on the losing end. 

Yet despite being politically marginalized, culturally undervalued and economically excluded, and despite experiencing greater difficulty accessing land than any other social group in the country, small farmers, who represent 30 percent of the country’s total population, produce 70 percent of the food consumed in the country. 

In addition, this disadvantaged but industrious population reminds those of us who live in cities of the value of having roots in our land and territory, and cherishing our identity.

Small-scale agriculture has taught Colombians about resilience and innovation. On less than one hectare, small farmers manage to feed themselves, create surpluses to sell and learn about the diverse Colombian soils and ecosystems through trial and error.  And despite being displaced because of the armed conflict, it has been small farmers who have opened the agricultural border in the country, and started their lives from scratch, in the country with the greatest internal displacement in the world—worse even than Syria.

In the value chains of the drug trafficking industry, small farmers have become the first link. Indeed, it is the most vulnerable link in a chain characterized by the predominance of activities that leave Colombia with nothing but social burdens: land concentration, idle lands ownership, diminished productivity and at-risk national food sovereignty and autonomy.

In the Peace Agreements, small farmers are recognized as victims of the armed conflict. A political framework to reduce the gaps between the countryside and the city was designed, guaranteeing the small farmers the right to political and economic participation and decision-making regarding the future of their territories. 

In points 1 and 4 of the Peace Agreements, Comprehensive Rural Reform and Comprehensive Solution to the Drug Problem respectively, multiple political and legal instruments were created. These include the land fund for Comprehensive Rural Reform, the multipurpose cadaster; Development Plans with a Territorial Approach; and Comprehensive Nations Plans for Substitution, among others. 

Although the implementation of these political and legal instruments has been slow, they have become novel tools to rethink small farmers as a strategic actor in the territorial planning to restore peace, the conservation of the territories and the guarantee of security, sovereignty and food autonomy.

In 2013, there was a national agrarian strike in Colombia, supported by the main farmers’ organizations, as well as workers from other areas, which over time managed to get the recognition of the citizens. Since then, Colombians who live in cities have shown growing empathy towards the small farmers’ movement, appreciating the producers of the food they have on their plates daily, as well as the need to rethink and re-territorialize cities to stop the growing trend of food deserts, which put at risk the right to food, especially for the most vulnerable. These transformations have become more necessary than ever in the context of the COVID-19 crisis.

This is a country whose rulers have lacked the gallantry to guarantee its citizens the right to food, and to preserve the country’s rich biocultural diversity. They have succumbed to globalization and progress in the short term, at the expense of resources that give us life. 

In these days of covid-19, we ​​have witnessed two trends that are two sides of the same coin.

On the one hand, we see citizens who increasingly demand healthy, local and sustainable food, and who are more willing to consume food from small farmers, family and community agriculture. 

On the other hand, small farmers continue to face the traditional challenges of the agricultural Colombia: the appalling road and telecommunications infrastructure, the persistence of the armed conflict, the murder of social leaders, insufficient healthcare system that increases the risk of infection and death due to the epidemic, price speculation and misinformation, among many other challenges.

Despite these challenges, there are reasons to be hopeful. For instance, the creation and strengthening of collaborative networks between the territories, the building of close relationships between producers and consumers, the possibility of resuming peace dialogues between the National Government and the guerrilla of the National Liberation Army (ELN), the use of information and communication technologies to facilitate food distribution and the consolidation of small farmers and/or agro-ecological markets as viable and secure supply alternatives, even in times of epidemic.

The reader may be wondering, how can I put my grain of sand? It is very simple, buy local! Buy from small farmers, family and community agriculture! Go back to the farmers markets, go to meet the producer so you give him your vote of confidence to stay in the territory feeding hope to the country.

In Colombia, The National Network of Family Farming (RENAF) leads the national campaign “Yo llevo el campo Colombiano (I carry the Colombian countryside) that seeks to make visible the farmers markets that exist throughout the country.

By eating local and seasonal food lime the uchuva or the curuba, and supporting the small farmers, Colombians can put their grain of sand in the construction of peace in Colombia.

About 3Colibrís

We are an organization that contributes to the strengthening of marketing and logistics of products from small farmers, family and community and/or agroecological agriculture in Latin America. We work for the construction of sustainable farming that’s connected to the cities in Colombia and Latin America. We seek out and involve producers of healthy food and agro-ecological products so consumers have easier access to these foods. We visit and guide food producers to improve their marketing channels and ensure that we work with ethical and responsible organizations.

Ana Prada is the founder of 3Colibrís and a business administrator and sociologist from the Javeriana University of Bogotá, apprentice for the International Training in Dialogue and Mediation at the University of Uppsala and the International Course on Food Systems at the University of Wageningen. She has worked for Colombian Caritas in the implementation of “Article One” of the Peace Agreements, and on projects for UNDP, UNFAO, EU and the Suyusama Foundation. 

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No cultivamos porque está de moda: Cultivamos como resistencia, para la curación y la soberanía

Durante más de 150 años, desde las zonas rurales del sur hasta las ciudades del norte, las personas Negras han utilizado la agricultura para construir comunidades autodeterminadas y resistir las estructuras opresivas que las destruyen.

Hoy en día, la agricultura sigue desempeñando un papel importante en la vida de las personas Negras, por lo que vemos proyectos y programas de agricultura urbana en Filadelfia, Detroit y Washington D.C. y otras ciudades de los Estados Unidos. En todas estas ciudades, hay organizaciones lideradas por personas Negras que cultivan soberanía alimentaria y de la tierra ayudando a individuos y comunidades a recuperar su agencia y posesión sobre sus sistemas alimentarios.

Mi camino dedicado a la lucha de defensa y recuperación del territorio para la sobrebania alimentaria comenzó mucho antes de que yo naciera. Mis antepasados eran africanos esclavizados, obligados a cultivar en condiciones abominables en Carolina del Sur, Texas y Georgia. En 2012, comencé mi primer trabajo profesional trabajando en una organización sin fines de lucro dedicada a la justicia alimentaria e educación nutricional en Filadelfia.

CONTINUE LEYENDO EN ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH NEWS

We don’t farm because it’s trendy; we farm as resistance, for healing and sovereignty

For more than 150 years, from the rural South to northern cities, Black people have used farming to build self-determined communities and resist oppressive structures that tear them down.

Today, agriculture still serves an important role in the lives of Black people, which is why we see urban agriculture projects and programs in Philadelphia, Detroit, and Washington D.C. and other cities across the United States. In all of these cities, there are Black-led organizations cultivating food and land sovereignty by helping individuals and communities regain agency and ownership over their food system.

My journey in food and land work began long before I was born. My ancestors were enslaved Africans forced to farm under abhorrent conditions in South Carolina, Texas, and Georgia. In 2012, I started my first professional job working at a food justice and nutrition education non-profit in Philadelphia. I worked with youth from across West Philly to explore connections between food, agriculture, culture, sustainability, and leadership.

KEEP READING ON ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH NEWS

The Moment for Food Sovereignty is Now

Last weekend, Kristin Davey received an unexpected shock upon entering her local nursery in Sebastopol, California, north of San Francisco. “The shelves were picked over. The vegetable starts were almost gone. And the seed racks were completely bare,” she said, “I’ve been going to nurseries for 15 years and I have never seen them so empty.”

Davey went home empty-handed that day, and she is far from alone. Just as panic buying is emptying grocery shelves around the country, “panic planting” has overrun nurseries and seed companies alike as people flock to stock up on seeds and seedlings to grow food at home. Nurseries, which are considered essential businesses in some states, are scrambling to keep up with demand, and some have begun to offer curbside pickup and delivery to respect social distancing guidelines.

Seed companies are also inundated. Late last month, Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds closed their website to catch up on a record number of orders, while Johnny’s Seed Company co-CEO Gretchen Kruysman reported that the company has seen a 300 percent increase in orders since early March.

KEEP READING ON CIVIL EATS

How Fake Food Accelerates the Collapse of the Planet and Our Health

Food is not a commodity, it is not “stuff” put together mechanically and artificially in labs and factories. Food is life. Food holds the contributions of all beings that make the food web, and it holds the potential of maintaining and regenerating the web of life. Food also holds the potential for health and disease, depending on how it is grown and processed. Food is therefore the living currency of the web of life.

As an ancient Upanishad reminds us “Everything is food, everything is something else’s food”. Good and real food are the basis of health. Bad, industrial, fake food is the basis of disease. Hippocrates said “Let food be the medicine”. In Ayurveda, India’s ancient science of life, food is called “sarvausadha”: the medicine that cures all disease. Industrial food systems have reduced food to a commodity, to “stuff” that can then be constituted in the lab. In the process both the planet’s health and our health has been nearly destroyed.

KEEP READING ON LIFEGATE