Action Card November 2017
Material provided by Africa Europe Faith & Justice Network UK
Organisations have come together to develop the Alternative Trade Mandate. This calls for an overhaul of the trade
regime - one that leads to alternatives, where trade works for everyone, and the environment. Unlike current trade
negotiations consultations for this mandate have been participatory and transparent, and have highlighted areas of trade
in need of reform.
Trade should be about exchange, with ecologically and culturally distinct regions equitably sharing their products,
skills and creativity. In recent decades, it has become less about exchange of goods and more about eliminating social
and environmental safeguards in pursuit of corporate profit. Trade is being used as a system of control by the powerful to
promote the specific interests and wealth of the few.
Food and how we produce it
Our globalised food system is failing our farmers, our health, and the environment. Mass food production by powerful
corporations has failed to eliminate hunger for millions of people. Liberalised trade and lack of market regulation have
led to farmers worldwide selling at prices below the cost of production, making farm livelihoods unsustainable.
To bring about change our UK government and EU legislators need to:
· respect the right to food and ‘food sovereignty’, meaning that people in Europe and the Global South have the
right to define and control their own local food systems.
· move away from multilateral and bilateral free trade rules that distort prices for farmers and lead to unequal
access to natural resources.
· allow trading partners in developing countries to impose tariffs and quotas on imports designed to protect food
security and farmers’ livelihoods.
· ensure greater self-sufficiency in products that can be produced in Europe, especially protein and oil crops as
alternatives for imports of (GMO) soybeans, palm oil and biofuels
· eliminate imports of biofuels to the EU and abandon its biofuels directive replacing it with other measures, such
· review policy on imported food products that cannot be produced in the EU.
· bring investment in food production and purchase of farmland in developing countries, (Land Grabbing), under
new, binding investment agreements with human rights obligations.
Action Pray thoughtfully about these issues and support initiatives which seek to promote thought and action concerning
Approach government ministers to ensure that these matters are at the front of appropriate agendas.