The Rise of Food Sovereignty in Southeast Asia

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    Abstract

    Since the 1996 Food Summit, there has been an acceptance among policymakers and researchers globally that “food security exists when all people, at all times, have physical and economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food that meets their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life.” However, this definition is deemed inadequate by some social movements. La Via Campesina, an international social movement, launched Food Sovereignty at the 1996 Food Summit as an alternative concept to the mainstream definition of food security which was officially adopted by the Food and Agriculture Organization. It was initially considered as an alternative framework to the market-driven nature of food security which did not give enough attention to the questions of where, how, by whom, and for whom food was produced. Food Sovereignty has been gaining popularity as a number of governments have officially adopted its framework and principles on a national level. In the Via Campesina’s Forum for Food Sovereignty in 2007, its principles were elaborated once again as follows: promotion of greater participation in decision-making and the rights of farmers to define their own food and agriculture systems; marginal farmers should have access to land (including land reforms), water, seeds, livestock breeds, and credit; right of local people to have access to healthy and culturally appropriate food in which: food should be produced in an ecologically sustainable manner; decision-making on food production, distribution, and consumption should be placed in the hands of local producers, distributors, and consumers, and not in the hands of markets and corporations; prioritisation of local and national economies and markets, and empowerment of peasant and family farmer-driven agriculture, artisanal fishing, pastoralist-led grazing, and food production; ensuring transparency in food trade that guarantees just income to all peoples and the rights of consumers to control their food and nutrition; ensuring the rights of local producers to use and manage lands, territories, waters, seeds, livestock, and biodiversity; establishing new social relations free of oppression and inequality; ensuring food systems safeguard inter-generational equity.

    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationNon-Traditional Security in the Asia-Pacific
    Subtitle of host publicationA Decade of Perspectives
    EditorsAlistair Cook, Tamara Nair
    Place of PublicationSingapore
    PublisherWorld Scientific Publishing
    Chapter16
    Pages95-98
    Number of pages4
    ISBN (Electronic)9789811224430
    ISBN (Print)9789811224423
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Mar 2021

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