Video: Hands on the land for Food Sovereignty and Climate Justice

09 September 2016

Frontline communities and social movements around the world explain why we need to keep our hands on the land for food sovereignty and climate justice! This includes the false solutions they are presented with against climate change, and the real solutions and ways forward that small-scale food producers promote.

Land, water, seeds and other natural resources are not only vital for the world’s small-scale food producers, they form part of our common heritage, are a matter of fundamental human rights concern, and are at the core of any vision for a sustainable and shared planet. Communities across the North and the South who have historically maintained control over their territories are now seeing their access to and control over food, land, water and seeds threatened, limited and destroyed at an accelerating pace. Powerful actors, whose main concern is profit making, are increasingly capturing and concentrating control over natural resources, delivering the benefits of their use into ever fewer hands.

The collective campaign Hands on the Land ( aims to connect struggles for land and food sovereignty across the Global North and South. The campaign takes action to strengthen the visibility of small-scale food producers’ voices on the pressing issues associated with the control of land, water fisheries, seeds and food. 

In the context of food insecurity and climate change, the governance of natural resources requires addressing the core questions of who ought to have what rights to which resources, for what purposes and who ought to decide from a social justice-based rather than profit making-led perspective. It must thus be premised upon a human rights-based approach that recognises that the benefits derived from natural resources cannot be measured purely in economic terms but that values including human dignity, empowerment, and the fundamental civil, social, political, economic and cultural rights of small-scale producers and other vulnerable groups must be put first.

Food sovereignty provides a real solution to the current food, land and energy crises. It is a vision for true democratic control over natural resources by the very people whose livelihoods depend on them, and the protection of biodiversity and nature. It puts small-scale food producers at the heart of decentralized, autonomous, local and sustainable food systems.