- Despite the crisis provoked by Covid-19, family farmers and their cooperatives continue producing and ensuring food supply.
- It is a strategic sector and, therefore, family farming requires strong public policies and social recognition.
- Buy local, buy family farmers’ products. Let’s support those who feed us.
First, the WRF would like to express its deep condolences to the families who have lost a loved one. We also share our strength and solidarity to those still fighting against the virus.
The unexpected global crisis created by Covid-19 will probably change the way we understand health, work, solidarity, globalization and, ultimately, our lives. This might be the moment to start reflecting on our priorities as a society. Probably, this crisis will grant greater value to the caring for our health and to the need of having solid and universal health systems in our countries. Probably, this crisis will also give higher value to our food and, more specifically, to the need for food to be always available in our streets, markets, shops and supermarkets. Hopefully, we will all finally understand food exists, above all, due to the effort of 2.500 million family farmers working every day in difficult contexts, with few social recognition and absolutely insufficient public policies. Hopefully we will all understand family farming is a fundamentally strategic sector for the subsistence and development of every country on earth.
According to FAO statistics (FAO, 2014) globally there are 570 million farms of which 500 million are family operations, that is to say that they employ from, and are managed by, the family. Two and a half billion people pursue this activity which produces 80 percent of the world’s food in terms of value (FAO, 2014). Remember this each time that you are in front of the supermarket shelf or a restaurant menu. Our individual and collective action can also be a powerful instrument of change.
Family farming is more than an agrarian economic model given that it can be considered the foundation of sustainable food production, a pillar of environmentally sensitive land management, caretaker of the world’s biodiversity and a development creator for rural areas.
The United Nations General Assembly, aware of the strategic importance of Family Farming, declared the Decade of Family Farming 2019-2028 (resolution A/RES/72/239). The Decade aims to improve the quality of life of family farmers in all five continents, promoting the implementation of public policies and accelerating the fulfillment of Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development and its SDGs. The promotion of agri-coops will also be needed to ensure a better future to our food producers. Let’s value, support and trust the great potential of family farming to sustain our food supply and boost sustainability of our planet.
Family Farming; feeding the world, caring for the earth