Dr. Vanaja Ramprasad, founder of WEA’s partner in India, the GREEN Foundation, shares what the global community can learn from women farmers in India.
Why Food sovereignty? In renaming the concept, we have moved away from the mainstream discourse using familiar terms such as food security, right to food or entitlement to food. No doubt that this is a complicated issue since food production and availability play a critical role in a country’s progress.The multidimensional nature of food production spans across several issues starting with appropriate use of natural resources such that it does not erode into needs of the future generation. Today’s technological developments have brought in a new dimension to the production, distribution and consumption of food and that new dimension is the global politics of control over food in all its spheres.
Yet, at the same time there is a growing resistance against control over food as a source of nourishment, and not poison, as a source of peace and not conflict, as a source of health and not as disease, as a source of prosperity and not poverty, as a source of nurture and not destruction and decimation. The resistance is to free the notion of food as a weapon and from the shackles of globalised control.
Green Foundation – which has been working on vital issues such as seed conservation, also works on viable alternatives that have emerged from its intensive field-based work with small and marginal farmers in rain-fed areas of India. In this effort women have played a major role in self provisioning food for their families and their communities.