"From the field to the plate" by Xavier Montagut and Esther Vivas

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By J. C. Gª Fajardo

It is a monopoly that allows them to exercise strong control when determining what we consume, at what price, who it comes from, how it has been prepared, while having the explicit support of governments and international institutions that prioritize benefits of these companies to the food needs of people and respect for the environment.

The current food crisis highlights this serious situation. Today, the number of hungry people on a world scale exceeds one billion people, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), more than before the crisis began. Paradoxically, never in history has so much food been produced as now. Therefore, the problem is not in the production of food, but in the access to it, because large sections of the population, especially in the countries of the South, cannot pay the established prices.
But not only food has become a good at the service of the highest bidder, the natural resources that must guarantee the production of food, such as water, seeds, land ..., which for centuries had belonged to the communities, have been looted and privatized. This prevents the free access of peoples to the production and consumption of food. The right to food is today in the hands of the multinationals of the agri-food industry. Working the land, planting the seeds, accessing water, eating GMO-free and pesticide-free food ... is not an option available to farmers and consumers today.

In this context, it is essential to vindicate our right to food sovereignty: that the peoples can decide their agricultural and food policies, that they can protect and regulate domestic agricultural production and trade with the aim of achieving sustainable development and guaranteeing security. food. Public policies have to promote indigenous, sustainable, organic, GMO-free agriculture and for those products that are not grown locally, use fair trade instruments on an international scale. A paradigm shift in the production, distribution and consumption of food will only be possible within a broader framework of political, economic and social transformation and the creation of alliances between peasants, workers, women, immigrants, young people ... it is an indispensable condition for progress in this direction.
With this book the authors want to show the hidden face of the world agri-food system, who are its main actors, the causes that have led us to the situation of food crisis, the impact of the current model of agricultural production and consumption and point out the alternatives proposed from different social movements.

This publication has the testimony of activists, peasants, researchers and consumers from all continents, who, based on their analysis and experience, tell us about the impact of neoliberal policies on food production and marketing circuits, whether in their country. or on a global scale, as well as the struggles they carry out in favor of food sovereignty, fair trade and critical consumption.

We hope that this material will be useful to expose the logic of an extremely predatory and unjust agri-food system and that it allows us to analyze the causes of the current situation of insecurity and food crisis. Likewise, we hope that this book inspires and encourages the organization and the collective political action essential to move towards that “other possible world” that social movements advocate.


Video: HIGHLIGHTS. Xavier 68, Butler 55 (May 2022).