“Privatization is not the Answer”: 2nd film companion guide just released!

We’re delighted to announce that we’ve published our companion guide to Rich Appetites Episode 2 (Seeds)!

This guide is available in three formats: as a page on the film website, a Google Doc, and a PDF (available for download on the film webpage).

The companion guide goes into more detail on topics covered in the second film, diving deeper into the research and analysis backing up the various claims we make in the film.

This guide specifically breaks down and debunks four myths:

Myth 1: Intellectual Property Rights will stimulate innovation and competition in the agricultural sector, which will produce more and better quality seeds at lower prices.

Reality: Intellectual Property Rights privilege large corporations and laboratories, while restricting and undermining long-standing in situ crop development by farmers themselves. Read more…

 

Myth 2: The International Convention on the Protection of New Varieties of Plants (UPOV) is the only option available to African countries needing to pass laws on IPRs.

Reality: As a condition of WTO membership, African countries are required to implement some kind of intellectual property rights (IPRs) protections. However, there are different proposed models for how to do this. Among them are two competing and opposing frameworks: the 1991 International Convention on the Protection of New Varieties of Plants (UPOV), and the African Model Legislation for the Protection of the Rights of Local Communities, Farmers, and Breeders, and for the Regulation of Access to Biological Resources (also known as the African Model Law). However, this latter model law has been continually quashed by foreign interests and pressure from AGRA and other institutions. Read more…

 

Myth 3: Seed laws and regulations will help farmers ensure access to high-quality seeds.
Reality: The seed laws currently being passed protect companies, not farmers. In fact, they heavily restrict farmers’ practices and negatively impact the informal seed sector, which is highly efficient and culturally important. Read more…

 

Myth 4: If AGRA succeeds in its goal of making African agriculture operate more like a business, this will allow for economic growth and diversification at the local and national levels.

Reality: AGRA’s model of agricultural transformation is predicated on a large number of people leaving farming, increasing the commodification and consolidation of land in the hands of larger and wealthier firms. This is based on a flawed set of assumptions and Eurocentric experiences of economic change. Read more…

Posted in Agra Watch Blog Posts, Agra Watch News, News, Slider.

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