This Saturday, October 16, is World Food Day, a day on which to take action to end hunger — in one’s neighborhood, one’s country and around the world.
In the early dawn hours this Saturday, I’ll be riding a bus with dozens of other food justice activists headed first to a seafood cooperative and then to a local farmers’ cooperative in southern Mississippi. This is one of many exciting encounters that will be happening this weekend in connection with the Community Food Security Coalition’s annual conference in New Orleans (stay tuned for next week's posts from the field!).
In New Orleans, PAN and other coalition partners will also be launching the U.S. Food Sovereignty Alliance. Emerging out of the U.S. Working Group on the Food Crisis, the U.S. Food Sovereignty Alliance will be the first of its kind in the United States. It's composed of food justice, anti-hunger, labor, environmental, and faith-based groups, all working to end poverty, rebuild local food economies, and assert democratic control over the food system. Holding food as a human right and linking local and national struggles to the international movement for food sovereignty, the Alliance will be a nexus of hope and action.
This week, the U.S. Food Sovereignty Alliance has put out a Call to Action to individuals and food justice groups to join together in community events that educate, celebrate, and create affordable access to safe, healthy, and culturally appropriate food. In this way, we can revitalize our local food systems, rebuild strong local economies and begin reclaiming control of our food from the handful of corporations that have made such a mess of things. With the call to action, we also join La Via Campesina — a global movement fighting for food sovereignty and agrarian reform — in making food justice and democracy a reality at home.
Please join me, the U.S. Food Sovereignty Alliance and the global movement for food sovereignty by taking local action. Some ideas to get started: