A new paradigm is urgently needed for agriculture

A new paradigm is urgently needed for agriculture

By Giorgio Trucchi

Francesco Valente and Giovanni Pandolfini are peasant producers of the recovered Mondeggi agricultural estate, 200 hectares of vineyards, pastures, olive groves, forests, rural buildings and even a Renaissance villa, located between the municipalities of Bagno a Ripoli and Florence, in the center-west from Italy.

The farm is owned by the province of Florence and was abandoned in 2009. Faced with the imminent alienation and privatization of the valuable property, a large group of citizens decided to form the “Mondeggi Bien Común” movement and recovered the farm, restoring the dignity that this heritage agricultural deserves.

Joining Genuino Clandestino was an almost automatic decision, which led the movement to deepen its knowledge and practices against the grabbing and urbanization of agricultural lands, promoting food production and defending the territory and food sovereignty as an element of autonomy and self-determination.

The Rel spoke with Valente and Pandolfini in the framework of the public assembly of the NOEXPO network [1] “Food and social sovereignty of the territories: exchange between resistance practices and construction of economic alternatives”, which took place in the recovered Rimaflow factory .

-How and why did Genuino Clandestino emerge?

Giovanni Pandolfini- Arises with the idea of ​​bringing together peasant communities and movements from all over the country around themes and principles that promote concrete alternatives to the prevailing agri-food model that, in Italy, is criminalizing peasant agriculture.

In 2010 we wrote a manifesto that contains our principles and objectives, among others, to support and disseminate production practices that safeguard the well-being of the earth, nature, biodiversity and all living beings, counteracting the use of pesticides and the implementation of genetically modified organisms.

Likewise, we aim to drastically reduce the emission of greenhouse gases, the waste of water, the production of garbage, and we combat the exploitation of agricultural labor and the different forms of slave labor.

Likewise, we promote and promote the principle of food self-determination through the right to access genuine, economically accessible food produced in the territories.

We also claim the right to land as a “common good” and as an instrument of political action to produce food, and we aspire to build alliances with urban and rural movements that help bring producers and consumers closer together.

Finally, we propose to reconvert the use of urban and rural spaces based on practices of self-organization, solidarity, cooperation and caring for the territory.

-How is peasant agriculture being criminalized?

Francesco Valente- In Italy they have approved a set of regulations with which they intend to equate the products of small-scale peasant agriculture, based on local relationships and cultures, with those of the large food industry.

They are criminalizing our production practices and declaring our products illegal. This is all absurd.

Genuino Clandestino arises precisely to denounce and counteract this paradoxical situation, claiming our right to continue proposing real alternatives to an exploitative, polluting agricultural production model based on profit and the desire for wealth.

Against a profit-based model

"The land is to produce food"

-It is a clash of paradigms ...

GP- According to the dominant culture, peasant agriculture is uneconomic because the only production model that it recognizes as economically viable is the intensive, mechanized, chemical-based model, financed by the banking system.

This model violates fundamental rights, including access to land. Our territories are victims of a real estate market doped by speculation, and this seriously affects and hinders peasant productive activity.

The public sector is often complicit in this situation. Throughout the country there are huge tracts of land that are abandoned and unproduced, for the simple fact that, at this time, they are not developable and do not produce profit. A new paradigm is urgently needed for agriculture, because the land is to produce food and to feed living beings, and not to generate profit.

-How is the EXPO MILAN 2015 and its motto "Nurturing the planet, energy for life" inserted in this context?

FV- It is a clear example of how the dominant system appropriates keywords, content and proposals; of how they are swallowed, transformed, digested, and then proposed to broad layers of the population that do not question themselves on these issues.

In this sense, networking assumes vital importance for the future of this country and the entire planet. We must continue to experiment with forms of resistance and to build real alternatives to an economic model that has failed.

[1] Network of organizations and movements opposed to the holding, from May 1 to October 31, 2015, of the mega event EXPO MILAN 2015, whose motto will be "Nurturing the planet, energy for life. Paradoxically, the activities will take place on an area of ​​more than 100 hectares of land that, until 4 years ago, was used for growing food and that will soon be urbanized and privatized.


Video: Senary Industry, a New Paradigm in Agriculture (June 2021).