AGRA Watch is a grassroots, Seattle-based group challenging the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s questionable agricultural programs in Africa, including its Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA). The Gates Foundation and AGRA claim to be “pro-poor” and “pro-environment,” but their approach is closely aligned with transnational corporations, such as Monsanto, and foreign policy actors like USAID. They take advantage of food and global climate crises to promote high-tech, market-based, industrial agriculture and generate profits for corporations even while degrading the environment and disempowering farmers. Their programs are a form of philanthrocapitalism based on biopiracy.
Recent updates and actions:
TUES April 25: Rich Appetites Virtual Film Screening and Panel Discussion
Rich Appetites: The Corporate Capture of African Food Systems and the Hunger for Justice
TUES April 25, 2023: 9am PST / 12pm EST / 5pm WAT/ 6pm SAST / 7pm EAT
Virtual Film Screening and Panel Discussion
Please register to receive the Zoom link: tinyurl.com/RichAppetitesVirtual2023
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We will screen specific clips from our Rich Appetites film series, co-produced by AGRA Watch and the Alliance for Food Sovereignty in Africa, followed by a discussion with food sovereignty activists in Africa. Reflecting on takeaways and connections from the films, panelists will discuss the struggle between corporations and grassroots civil society movements over the future of African food systems. The panelists, some of whom are featured in the films, are:
Mariam Mayet, African Centre for Biodiversity, South Africa
Frances Davies, Zambia Alliance for Agroecology and Biodiversity
Mamadou Goïta, Institute for Research and Promotion of Alternatives in Development (IRPAD), Mali
As the Rich Appetites series shows, billionaire philanthropists, corporations, and external institutions have increasingly pressured African governments and regional bodies, like the African Union, to adopt agricultural policies and frameworks that privilege big business. At the same time, small-scale food producers, civil society organizations, and grassroots movements across the continent are pushing for agroecology, food sovereignty, and policies that respond to the needs and desires of ordinary people. Panelists will illuminate how different national governments and regional institutions have navigated these opposing forces, and what can be done to ensure self-determination in African agricultural systems.
A recording of the screening and panel discussion will be made available online following the event.
Don’t forget to register to receive the Zoom link – Thank you! tinyurl.com/RichAppetitesVirtual2023