Defend food sovereignty and justice! The TPP is death to farmers and local food systems!
Why do corporate agrifood giants (Mansanto, Cargill, ADM...) have so much power and control over our food system? Why are a BILLION people going hungry while we simultaneously witness record grain harvests and record profits for large agribusiness? Why have tens of millions of small farmers lost their land in the last decade?
Neoliberal trade policies -- in the form of “Free Trade Agreements” and WTO involvement in agriculture -- tie our horribly inequitable and exploitative agrifood system together in a way that guarantees mega profit for a very few while either starving or providing highly processed malnourishing foods for the vast majority. The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Free Trade Agreement is laying the groundwork for an Asia-Pacific wide agreement (54 percent of world’s economy), and is even more heinous than its predecessors. Different from FTAs of the past, negotiations are taking place completely in secret... except for the 600 corporate lobbyists that have regular access to the negotiating texts (including Big Ag, Big PhaRMA, Big Banks, and all the other elites you don’t want making your laws at all, and especially not behind closed doors).
Even though the TPP is being designed without democratic input, we do know that:
- Free Trade Agreements always dispossess small farmers and destroy local food systems (it’s estimated that up to 2 million Mexican farmers lost their land as a direct result of NAFTA alone). For many of the world’s poorest, this equals hunger or death.
- The TPP will help agribusiness to get bigger and more powerful in their drive to consolidate ownership of the food system -- from seed to shelf.
- Under the TPP, it is probable that countries like New Zealand and Australia will loose their sovereign right to decide whether they want to eat GMOs -- the U.S. has made it a clear priority to abolish even basic labeling laws, considered a “barrier to trade.”
- The TPP will require the U.S. and other countries to import food that does not meet their safety standards.
- The TPP will only speed up the global race to the bottom in terms of farm prices, workers wages, environmental standards and human rights.
- And the list goes on beyond food and agriculture.... threatening internet privacy (thought SOPA was bad? ), banning “Buy American” procurement laws, depriving millions from life-saving medicines, freeing bankers from regulatory oversight, granting corporations the power to attack national laws...
No this is not a conspiracy, it is the harsh reality of neoliberalism and FTAs. Political action cannot stop with a cup of fair trade coffee, we must organize across our national borders and take to the streets if we want to create a world that is truly fair and free!
Stop the TPP! Stop the corporate free trade agenda! Food and the right to produce food are human rights!