Food Industry: Loss and Waste
March 2013: The numbers are alarming: Up to 40 % of all farm produce worldwide is squandered before it gets to the table. A significant amount is lost after harvesting. Reducing this waste could alleviate hunger, experts say. Aid strategies are misguided however. In: D+C 2013/04
Where the breadbasket is hanging
August 2010: In early September in Accra, Ghana, will be revealed how to end hunger in Africa as well as the food crisis! With a "breadbasket strategy" the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) wants to achieve a breakthrough in agriculture production. So it won't be long before Africa's small-scale farmers will noch only feed the continent, but will also become food exporters. More
Land grabs are no development opportunity
With „land grabbing“ by foreign investors on the increase there are attempts by some governments and international institutions like the World Bank to negotiate a Code of Conduct (CoC) with a set of principles, which would turn the land deals from a threat into an opportunity for rural development and poverty reduction. A Comment by Saturnino Borras Jr. and Jennifer Franco. More
Livestock: Continued growth and market-based policies
March 2010: In February 2010, the FAO released its annual report “The State of Food and Agriculture”, its major flagship publication, with a special section on the livestock sector (“Livestock in the Balance”). One of the key messages: The transformation and global expansion of the livestock industry is threatening pastoralism and smallholder mixed farming, thus contributing to increased poverty and environment destruction. A Summary, by Uwe Hoering: Download (pdf-file 103 kb)
Deceptive Fortune Tellers
Awakening Africa's Sleeping Giant – Prospects for Commercial Agriculture in the Guinea Savannah Zone and Beyond, by Michael Morris, Hans P. Binswanger-Mkhize, Derek Byerlee, published June 2009 by World Bank.
September 2009: The dimensions are truly gigantic: „A vast stretch of African savannah land that spreads across 25 countries has the potential to turn several African nations into global players in bulk commodity production“, reads a press release from the FAO. Four million square kilometers of Guinea Savannah, „one of the largest underused agricultural land reserves in the world“, could be developed for commercial agriculture, says the FAO-World Bank study. A review by Uwe Hoering
Read more at World Economy & Development
Ethiopia's Water Dilemma (August 2006)
Ethiopia has become something of a poster child for the dam industry, which contends that big dams are critical for ending its poverty. But most development analysts believe the rural poor need smaller-scale water project more suited to meeting their immediate needs. See Ethiopia's Water Dilemma, in: World Rivers Review, August 2006, p 4/5. Download (pdf-File 1.6 MB)
Ethiopia - Water for Private Sector Development (2005)
Hunger, aridity, flooding - Ethiopia is a particularly dramatic case of poverty and under-development. Yet, the problem is not a lack of water but it's uneven distribution and the lack of access. Inspite of this, the World Bank policy in Ethiopia promotes the diversion of water to private enterprises and profits: Download (pdf-Datei 110 kb)
Water for food - water for profit (2005)
While in the 1990s the World Bank's privatisation policy aimed primarily at the urban water sector, now she promotes investments in all water sectors, especially irrigation. A large part of this goes into physical infractructure, into multipurpose dams and large irrigation systems. Parallel to this the Bank supports reforms like the formation of water user organisations, the introduction of higher prices for water and the reorganisation of water rights. Intention is to commercialise and modernise irrigation agriculture, which would leave out most of small-scale farmers and speed up the concentration process towards export oriented agroindustry.
Privatisation in Irrigation Agriculture (2005)
In most countries, construction, water provision and maintenance of irrigation schemes ware publicly managed or administered. In view of empty treasuries, management problems and stagnating productivity of many irrigation schemes there have been reform attempts for years, frequently advanced by international finance organisations like the World Bank. Catch words of new concepts like Participatory Irrigation Management are water user associations, managment transfer and cost recovery.
Privatisation in irrigation agriculture. Briefing Paper (Brot für die Welt): Download (pdf-Datei 36 kb)
Biopirates in the Kalahari? (2004)
November 2004: The San peoples in Southern Africa have been using a plant called Hoodia for centuries. On hunting expeditions and when food is scarce, it staves off the sensation of hunger. Now industry wants to capitalise on this appetite-suppressing effect, churning out a hunger-curbing drug in the form of diet pills or slimming bars. But the San peoples stood up against this attempt of biopiracy and for their right to a piece of the pie. The agreement they have managed to conclude assures them of a share in the profits. This is quite a success!
Biopirates in the Kalahari? 24 pages, ed. by WIMSA and EED: Download (pdf-file 1,97 MB)
Benefit Sharing with the San (2004)
November 2004: The UN-Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) entrusts national governments with sovereignty over the genetic resources in their respective countries. In return, they are made responsible for regulating access to these resources and making sure that the benefit is shared justly and equitably between countries, companies and local people. One of the few examples so far of such a benefit sharing arrangement with indigenous peoples is the agreement with the San of Southern Africa over the commercial use of Hoodia, a natural hunger suppressant.
Text "Slimming with Hoodia" as download (pdf-File 105 kb)