Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Attack Of The Land-grabbers: The Race For Land In Africa

Two farmers wearing headscarves walk near a dirt road on a farm.
Falesse (left) is the treasurer of an association in Mozambique which produces vegetables with an irrigation system. “We wanted to have an activity that doesn’t depend so much on the weather and with irrigation we can basically produce all year round”, he says. In the Zambezi valley of Mozambique, climate change has affected hundreds of thousands people, who largely depend on rain-fed subsistence agriculture to make a living. (Marcos Villalta / Save the Children / Flickr)
No one ever talked to me. Just one day I found the tractor in my field plowing up everything. No one who lost their machamba [1] has been compensated!
This story is part of what a 45 year old Ethiopian farmer, Chirime, experienced when a big farm came into the community. [2] This article aims to highlight stories just like Chirime’s, which show the clash between small farmers and big, usually corporate or state-backed, agriculture. This clash is part of a fight that is occurring across the world, with some governments wanting control of land in order to feed their populations and others, usually in the business world, wanting to turn land into a commodity so they can gain increased profits.

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