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For Seed-Sovereignty – stop Corporate Control

7 March 2011

Action in Brussels on April 18: We demand the right of all farmers to save seeds from their own harvest, to re-sow, distribute & sell them;

For thousands of years farmers all over the world have been creating, preserving and renewing livestock and crop diversity. This diversity is fundamental for our daily bread, our food sovereignty and the human right to food and must remain under control of farmers' communities. We defend Farmers’ Rights to obtain seeds from our own harvests, to breed them and to distribute them, as is defined in the UN international seed treaty. Farmers' Rights are not respected and run the very serious risk of being further curtailed through current revisions of European seed legislation. Only ten companies already control 67% of the international commercial seed market. They are demanding that their intellectual property rights be expanded in order to increase their profits and to impose industry varieties throughout the world. Varieties capable of being re-sown are disappearing. Yet revision of European seed laws seek to relegate these heirloom and regional varieties to a small and controlled niche. It is not these companies’ varieties that will best feed the world in the future. A diversity of small farming practices is needed, including locally-adapted varieties. This is not a nostalgic looking backward: We recall that three-quarters of men and women peasants all over the world produce, exchange and sell their own seeds. We demand: The right of all farmers to save seeds from their own harvest, to re-sow, distribute & sell them; the promotion of diversity in all regions by supporting farmers and breeders of varieties that can be re-sown; the prohibition of GMOs in agriculture and in all European foodstuffs; the prohibition of patents on plants and animals, their traits and genes, as well as patents on breeding methods; a new agrarian policy, which, instead of supporting unsustainable, energy-intensive industrial production and monocultures without farmers, promotes biodiverse and low-input ecological production with farmers, in the framework of Food Sovereignty Food sovereignty is seed sovereignty!

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