The COVID 19 pandemic has shown that the need for food sovereignty and agroecology is no longer up for debate. Local agroecological food systems and short supply chains have proved resilient and innovative during worldwide lockdowns. In contrast, industrial food systems built on global supply chains are fragile, relying on the exploitation of workers and food producers and contributing to the destruction of ecosystems which created the conditions for the coronavirus pandemic. COVID 19 has only highlighted existing injustice and inequality in the industrial food system.
Friends of the Earth International have released a new video series, “Food Sovereignty for Just Recovery from COVID 19”. The series features six Friends of the Earth groups, including Sahabat Alam Malaysia (SAM) and Legal Rights and Natural Resource Center (LRC), who` have supported peasants, fisherfolk, womens’ collectives, and communities worldwide to fill hunger gaps and feed themselves and others during the pandemic. Their initiatives include community-supported fisheries, food cooperatives, social programs, mutual aid, solidarity kitchens, and agroecological farming.
While 270 million additional people will face hunger due to COVID 19, most government action has focused on supporting big business. We join Friends of the Earth International and the hundreds of civil society organisations, who are calling on the UN Committee for World Food Security to urgently take action on COVID 19 and provide guidance for governments on how to prioritise the Right to Food and Food Sovereignty in their policies for a Just Recovery.