Strengthening FAO’s commitment to agroecology

– A briefing for civil society

International institutions can play an important role in advancing agroecology for sustainable food systems. Our new booklet provides strategic advice to civil society groups for influencing global policy-making on food to support agroecology while avoiding co-optation.

Agroecology represents an alternative paradigm for food and farming – one that puts people and planet at centre stage and emphasises the priorities of food producers and marginalised peoples around the world.

Colin Anderson from the Centre for Agroecology, Water and Resilience and one of the authors of this booklet notes:

“Today, agroecology is in the limelight and being taken up by major institutions like the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). This briefing can help civil society to understand how FAO can enable an agroecology that challenges the status quo and can undo the ecologically and socially damaging underpinnings of the dominant food and farming policies.”

The booklet presents an analysis of the current dynamics, opportunities and challenges of strengthening FAO’s commitment to agroecology. It is especially useful for actors in civil society who are promoting agroecology as an alternative paradigm for food and farming.

Author Michel Pimbert notes the timeliness of the publication:

“The growing urgency of the climate crisis, poverty and global inequality compels institutions to stop rearranging the deckchairs and, rather, to take transformative action. An approach based on the principles and ethics of agroecology is essential for moving to a more just and sustainable planet.”

Author Janneke Bruil of Cultivate! argues:

“So far, FAO has played an important role in moving forward the vision of agroecology in discussions on food policy. Today, we are witnessing great momentum for agroecology to take a leap forward and transform the way the world’s food system is organized.  This booklet offers civil society strategic insights into both opportunities and challenges for strengthening FAO’s commitment to agroecology while ensuring it remains centered around the interests of food producers.“

This work is supported by the Centre for Agroecology, Water and Resilience of Coventry University (CAWR) , AgroecologyNow! and the AgroEcology Fund. The briefing is published as a part of the Reclaiming Diversity and Citizenship Series hosted by CAWR.