Farmers of the world call for promoting organic agriculture
The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) Farmers Forum is an on-going dialogue between IFAD, small farmers’ and rural producers’ organizations, governments, focused on agricultural and rural development and poverty reduction. The Forum meets every two years for a global consultation in Rome with fifth edition taking place on 17-20 February 2014. IFOAM was represented by a delegation of our farmers’ constituency, INOFO, lead by its President Moises Quispe.
As Andre Leu, President of IFOAM pointed out, "this year was outstanding in that it is a tippingpoint for agriculture. In this International Year of Family Farming, the farmer leaders from every arable continent have clearly stated that the focus must be on the vast majority of the worlds farmers, small holder family farms rather than large scale agribusiness. This is because these family farmers, comprising of one third of the worlds population, over 2 billion people, produce 70% of the world’s food. Most importantly, this should be done through organic agro-ecological methods, participatory systems and farmer empowerment, with an emphasis on women and youth."
Mr Quispe added that "a paradigm shift is needed in order to prioritize local markets, so that non toxic, fresh, healthy affordable food gets to where the majority of the world's hungry live - in rural areas."
The event this year was also unique in that this was the first time when all farmers’ representatives have unanimously acknowledged the importance of organic agriculture. This is expressed in the final statement of the Forum, which calls for the promotion of organic agriculture.