A new handbook to support local land mobilisations
A collective of organisations, coming together under the banner of the Nyéléni Europe Food Sovereignty Movement have just released a new handbook: “Your Land, My Land, Our Land: Grassroots Strategies to Preserve Farmland and Access to Land for Peasant Farming and Agroecology”. Bringing together real-life stories, practical experiences, legal tools and more, the handbook highlights strategies to facilitate access to land for the benefit of all peoples: peasant and agroecological farmers, consumers, pastoralists, consumers, local communities and environmentally-minded people and organisations. Both the COVID-19 pandemic and the European Commission’s Farm to Fork strategy have highlighted the importance of local food systems, and this handbook highlights the crucial roles we all have in building a more sustainable and fairer system.
Your Land, My Land, Our Land proves that resistance is fertile. Community-based land mobilisations have increased and expanded across the continent over the past decades. Twelve different approaches are recounted showing a variety of experiences: from the historic “Notre-Dames-des-Landes” occupation (against an attempt to build an airport in France), the longstanding NO TAV movement in Italy (to block the creation of a high speed railway line), the mobilisation to “Save Roșia Montană” (from the development of Europe’s largest open cast gold mine in Romania), to the collaboration between the Brussels government and the community land trust Terre-en-vue (to reclaim land for local food production). Other approaches demonstrate the effective and increasing mobilisation of community supported agriculture (CSA) groups to extend their solidarity to secure land for local producers. And to use innovative and very practical tools like the Field Liberation Movement in Belgium have done, selling beer to finance land actions.
Each experience is useful as both a stand-alone tool, as well as in conjunction with the other tips, tools and tried-and-tested methods included. The Handbook also provides insight into the land policies, both national policies and international instruments, which can be used to preserve farmland and grant access to it for peasant agroecology.
The contributors hope that collectives involved in local mobilisations, land activist groups, peasant farmers’ organisations, future farmers, organisations working on food sovereignty, consumers’ groups, environmental groups and other food and environmental organisations will be able to use the handbook to support their work.
The release of the handbook will also be followed by a series of webinars focusing on specific handbook cases and other key land issues. A full presentation of the publication will take place on 16 June, followed by more thematic sessions that focus on key cases up to November 2020. More here soon!
Your Land, My Land, Our Land is a collective document coordinated by European Coordination Via Campesina (ECVC), Terre de Liens, URGENCI, Eco Ruralis, the International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM-EU), Real Farming Trust (RFT) and Transnational Institute (TNI), to which many allies and other organisations have contributed. It was produced as part of the Erasmus + partnership on Innovative Land Strategies.
It is available in three languages (English, Spanish and French) and openly accessible in full below.