By Dell deChant
Food Sovereignty: “Food sovereignty is 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. It puts the aspirations and needs of those who produce, distribute and consume food at the heart of food systems and policies rather than the demands of markets and corporations.”– Declaration of Nyéléni, the first global forum on food sovereignty, Mali, 2007.
See also: U.S. Food Sovereignty Alliance, http://usfoodsovereigntyalliance.org/what-is-food-sovereignty/
Urban Food Sovereignty is here conceived as the right of persons in urban ecosystems to define their own food and agriculture policies and practices, and to produce healthy and culturally appropriate food through their own means using ecologically sound and sustainable methods, independent of industrial food systems.
~ Derived in part from work of La Via Campasina (est. 1993)
Some Relevant Concepts (derived from U.S. Food Sovereignty Alliance)
FOCUSES ON FOOD FOR PEOPLE
Food sovereignty puts the right to sufficient, healthy and culturally appropriate food for all at the center of food, agriculture, livestock and fisheries policies.
VALUES FOOD PROVIDERS
Food sovereignty values all those who grow, harvest and process food, including women, family farmers, herders, fisherpeople, forest dwellers, indigenous peoples, and agricultural, migrant and fisheries workers.
LOCALIZES FOOD SYSTEMS
Food sovereignty brings food providers and consumers closer together so they can make joint decisions on food issues that benefit and protect all.
PUTS CONTROL LOCALLY
Food sovereignty respects the right of food providers to have control over their land, seeds and water and rejects the privatization of natural resources. FS opposes surplus food dumping, mass-feeding operations, GMO seeds and foods, and colonization by Industrial Agriculture.
BUILDS KNOWLEDGE AND SKILLS
Food sovereignty values the sharing of local knowledge and skills that have been passed down over generations for sustainable food production free from technologies that undermine health and well-being.
WORKS WITH NATURE
Food sovereignty focuses on production and harvesting methods that maximize the contribution of ecosystems, avoid costly and toxic inputs and improve the resiliency of local food systems in the face of climate change.
Recognizing the sources of our existence and living so as to sustain and enrich those sources – privileging the local, the seasonal, the organic, the sustainable, the resilient, the cooperative.
See also, USF Food Sovereignty Group web page:
Good accessible texts
Big Hunger: The Unholy Alliance Between Corporate America and Anti-Hunger Groups – Andrew Fisher
Food Justice – Robert Gottlieb and Anupama Joshi
Food as a Human Right: Combatting Global Hunger and Forging a Path to Food Sovereignty – Will Schanbacher
Food Sovereignty: Reconnecting Food, Nature and Community – Hannah Wittman, et al (eds)
Grounded Vision: New Agrarianism and the Academy – William Major
The Politics of Food: The Global Conflict Between Food Security and Food Sovereignty, Will Schanbacher
Religious Agrarianism: And the Return of Place – Todd Le Vasseur
Food First - https://foodfirst.org/about-us/
U.S. Food Sovereignty Alliance - http://usfoodsovereigntyalliance.org/
La Via Campesina - https://viacampesina.org/en/who-are-we/
* Policy Reflection Topic
Legislation prohibiting home rule on vegetable gardens - Senate Bill 82, House Bill 145.