Food sovereignty and rural development: beyond food security

People all over the world have agreed to the usage of the term food security, and it has also begun making a name for being a concept that is well renowned. An idea that was introduced in the 70s, it has quickly gathered steam since it focused on highlighting crucial issues such as the price crises that can be seen throughout the globe.

Food security seeks to highlight droughts as well as famines that occur frequently. Issues that are seen in a lot of areas such as malnutrition or even hunger which impacts the people on a global scale are addressed and put forward by food security.

It sought to keep prices of food as low and the accessibility and availability as high as possible, however long as possible. This was done through food regimes that were introduced by Friedmann and McMichael.

Food regimes were implemented in order to fathom how international policies concerning agriculture were structured on the back of economic and political policies and ideologies.

The implementation of this in the early 1990s was mostly unsuccessful since the adequate growth which was projected weren’t met, and hence, the focus was shifted from eradicating world hunger to increase production to meet global demands.

But efforts that are a result of food security such as policies have not been able to achieve the goal of keeping the hunger in check.

Although there is no question as to the amount of food produced, the estimation of the number of people that do have enough to eat has continued to remain somewhat the same.

This is partly due to the fact that the population has continuously been on the rise, but this alone isn’t the reason.

The idea of food sovereignty is a concept that is complementary to the concepts set by food security. But food sovereignty is entirely different although it stemmed from the food security dialogue that occurred during the 90s.

Food sovereignty was first established and articulated by a peasant movement that blossomed in La Via Campesina. It was mostly led by farmers and producers of the small to medium scale. Rather than focussing on what the market demands, it focuses more on methods that are sustainable.


This also puts the livelihoods of whoever produces onto the forefront.

In short, food security concentrates on world hunger and food shortage whereas food sovereignty focuses on removing the fundamental flaws and building from the bottom. But to fully understand what food sovereignty stands for, one needs to understand the extent of food security as well.

By |2018-11-13T06:02:08+00:00November 6th, 2018|Food sovereignty|