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Sustainable Peasant and Family Farm Agriculture Can Feed the World

The 2008 world food price crisis, and more recent price hikes this year, have focused attention on the ability of the world food system to "feed the world." In La Vía Campesina, the global alliance of peasant and family farm organizations, we believe that agroecological food production by small farmers is the agricultural model best suited to meeting future food needs.

The contemporary food crisis is not really a crisis of our ability to produce. It is more due to factors like the food speculation and hoarding that transnational food corporations and investment funds engage in, the global injustices that mean some eat too much while many others don't have money to buy adequate food, and/or lack land on which to grow it, and misguided policies like the promotion agrofuels that devote farm land to feeding cars instead of feeding people. However, we cannot deny that our collective ability to grow enough food - including, crucially, how we grow it -is an important piece in the jigsaw puzzle of ending hunger. It is here where the corporate agribusiness model of large-­‐scale industrial monocultures is failing us, and where peasant-­‐based sustainable farming systems based on agroecology and Food Sovereignty offer so much hope (Altieri, 2009).