Resolutions | Workshop on Consumer’s Right to Food and Sustainable Development
Advance consumers’ right to food and sustainable development
Overall, enact a national policy that recognizes and ensures everyone’s right to adequate, safe, accessible and affordable food. The following recommendations support this proposal:
1. Recognize the right to access food as a result of recognizing the right to produce food; the right to access the resources in order to produce food; the right to decide when, how much, and how to produce food; the right to a living wage; the right to organize as food workers and producers, as farmers and consumers; and the right to decide when it is necessary to import.
2. Implement genuine reforms aided by research and development in the agrarian, fisheries, and forestry and pasture sectors. Relocalize our food systems. Empower local food producers through a genuine agrarian reform program/ free land distribution. Support our local food producers through the unhampered provision of means and tools to revitalize domestic agriculture. Boost agriculture and link it to local businesses to create jobs, improve incomes, increase spending, and further stimulate production.
3. Promote and support communities’ collective advancement of sustainable food practices that address economic, health, and environmental concerns. Enable collective land cultivation or Bungkalan in the rural areas, and urban farming or gardening. Support consumers’ direct procurement of producers’ produce and strengthen consumer-producer partnerships in food production and distribution.
4. Promote and support biodiversity-based, ecological food production. As much as possible, propagate organic seeds. Encourage seed banking and other practices that avoid food wastage.
5. Ensure unhampered transfer of produce from farms to markets. The government should enable the delivery of food to communities and ensure the availability of safe, sufficient, and accessible food for all at all times. During crisis situations, measures such as cash subsidies to overcome natural or man-made obstacles (such as joblessness, falling incomes) should be put in place. Public procurement and distribution of food from local producers should be regularized. Food production and distribution should benefit vulnerable groups including women, the youth, the elderly and disabled.
6. Ensure a just pricing system. This should on one hand favor farmers and fisherfolks in terms of their produce. Prices of market-distributed produce meanwhile should also be regulated to ensure affordability by consumers.
7. Guarantee people’s participation in policy-making. Food producers and consumers should be at the forefront in shaping our food systems. Encourage and support the building of organizations advocating food security and sustainability and people’s control of the economy.
8. Ensure stability in our food system. This is about ample and sustained state support: crop insurance, market and price support, disaster preparedness and people-centered trade and investment policies.
a. Repeal anti-farmer and neoliberal or business-biased laws such as the Rice Liberalization Law. Stop relying on food importation.
b. Stop indiscriminate land and crop conversions. Agricultural lands should be cultivated primarily for local food consumption and to strengthen our food security. Stop converting agricultural lands into real estate or commercial use. Discourage the proliferation of export crops plantations.
c. Remove agriculture and fisheries from World Trade Organization (WTO) dictates. Liberate rural sectors from WTO prescriptions that work against strengthening local industries. Guard against speculative and stock future contract trading.
d. Reject corporate control over our food systems.
9. Enact pro-people laws beneficial to Filipinos during and beyond the pandemic. These include House Bill 7620 which aims to boost the local economy, strengthen health systems and provide social protection; House Bill 477 that aims to strengthen the rice industry by providing support and services to farmers and stops reliance on rice importation; and House Bill 239 or the Genuine Agrarian Reform Bill; and the SAGIP SAKA Act 2019 or RA 11321 which encourages local governments to directly purchase from farmers and fisherfolks’ cooperatives, in effect providing cheap food for consumers.
a. Increase the agriculture budget up to 10% of the GDP. Defund the National Task Force to End Local Communism and Armed Conflict used against farmers fighting for their well-being.