Future Food Control – How do native genetic resources for food and agriculture ensure food soverignity?


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The state of the situation in the world is very critical and the time is reached to stand and ask for change

Millions of dollars are spent on wars and much more goes in the oven of bankruptcy. Industrialization/privatization is the third sword hanging on the head of humanity. This entire situation created an evil triangle that resulted in poverty, malnutrition, hunger, jobs losses, wars, and many other consequences. This evil triangle is now going a step forward for future food control. To do this, a complex state of the situation is created in the form of stealing genes (biopiracy), patents for genes, so-called gene banks, GMO, BT, and promotion & backing for the promotion of industrialized breeds. The policymakers see the native genetic resources through the lens of industrial genetic resources; look they compare the high-yielding industrialized breed (Holstein Friesian) with the native Asian or African cow in milk but neglect the inputs and the hidden environmental costs of the industrialized/advanced breeds.

Local genetic verities and the adaptation to the climate change

The situation is even more than nastiest. Local verities of seed, capable of combating climate change and resisting droughts are pushed towards extinction with the evil mind of money hungry industrialized seed multinational companies. BT cotton is causing havoc losses to local biodiversity and now weed control is near to impossible. Such acts as backing and promotion of exotic verities pushed smallholders at stake and hunger increased manifold beside the so-called green revolution.http://Ban Genetically Modified Food – Pastoralists, Nomads, Small and Medium Scaled Family Farmers are the Custodian of Native genetic resources and Sustainable Farming Systems

Green revolution and the health catastrophy

The green revolution no doubt increased food production but at the cost of human health, environment, and biodiversity. The blind use of fertilizers, pesticides, weedicides, antibiotics, artificial colors and synthetic hormones created a situation of complex human health, and many more new diseases were introduced. Actually, the green revolution was meant to destroy the resilience of local communities to climate change and drought which ultimately depend on multinationals. Added benefits of reducing meat and dairy consumption this phenomenon resulted in giving food control in the hand of multinational.

Kankrej cattle of great Thar desert (divided in India and Pakistan). This type of cattle is highly adapted to the soaring heat, drought and scarcity of food and water.
Kankrej cattle (bull), the native livestock is very beautiful, multifunctional, and highly adapted to the local ecosystems.

Livestock biodiversity is at risk

If we talk about livestock biodiversity, the situation is very fragile and millions of smallholders are deprived of their precious indigenous livestock breeds and pushed into the hell of poverty and hunger. Millions of small livestock keepers, especially pastoralists in the South (underdeveloped part of the world, especially drylands) depend on indigenous livestock breeds for their survival. People and Animal Agriculture~The Philosophy of the Low Carbon Livestock

Also, these small farmers and pastoralists are the custodian of precious livestock biodiversity in their habitats and ecosystems. Their livestock breeds depend on very marginal lands for grazing which has no other use. Livestock production systems of such farmers need very low or even zero inputs, therefore, their share in climate change is very limited. The keepers of the breeds continuously evolve their breeds with the help of their indigenous knowledge in tune with environmental changes and consumer demands. My Philosophy of Sustainability — Camel, food security and climate change

ethiopiancamels
Camels are an incredible source of food security in the climate change context

Cradle of livestock breeds

The Southern hemisphere of the planet earth is the cradle of animal domestication and almost all the livestock species for food and agriculture traveled from South to North. During the last 100 years, gene flows from South to North have been dwarfed by flows in the opposite direction, from North to South. Large numbers of animals, semen, embryos, and eggs are shipped to developing countries, and Northern breeds (particularly of pigs, poultry, and dairy cattle) have become firmly established in various countries. This development led to the erosion of livestock biodiversity in the South. Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine | Full text | Ethnoveterinary treatments by dromedary camel herders in the Suleiman Mountainous Region in Pakistan: an observation and questionnaire study

Migration is an important source of genetic variability

The influx of high-performing genotypes into existing breeds has always been an important component in developing and improving breeds. In the history of all species investigated, gene flow has contributed significantly to diversity. In population genetics, migration is an important source of genetic variability. But the international exchange of genetic material (North to South) from a decreasing number of sires (bulls) increasingly loses genetic variation with global impacts for developed and developing countries.FAO Press releases on AnGR

The desert king camel
Camel is a highly adapted livestock, ensuring food security in the very arid ecosystem.

This flow of genes (breeds) is very unnatural and has environmental consequences. Such breeds need very high inputs of energy in the form of acclimatizing housing and feeding high energy and protein levels. Also, according to a study, naturally, the flora and fauna species travel from south to north to cope with climate change. In this context, this is an opportunity for southern breeds to flow towards the north and that is very natural. Hence supporting gene flow from north to south is very stupid and wastes the money of the western taxpayer in the form of subsidies to the breeders of the North.

Blind support for intensification of livestock farming

The northern governments subsidize livestock exports by their banking system, while the South has furthered the import of exotic genetic materials, for example by offering livestock keepers credit, services, and subsidized feed. Southern governments tend to favor livestock industrialization at the expense of smallholder producers. International agreements regulating agricultural trade are likely to enhance the intensification of livestock production and increase gene flows to the South.

Native sheep breed of Balochistan Pakistan
Native livestock breeds are highly resilient and sustain their productivity in limited resources

North breeds not only alter the breed diversity of the South but promotes a new culture of agricultural intensification and industrialization, leading to benefit the industries of developed countries. Such a system is always dependent on foreign aids. The cash amount of aid usually goes into the pocket of corrupt officials and politicians and again transfers to the western banks. This is an evil cycle of money to exploit the small stockers of the south and narrow the diversity of the breeds. Turning Again to the Native Gene ~ Back to the Future

Moving to the other Destination
Khurasani Goat Breed

Failure of this system

  • Breeds are neither suited for the new environment nor fits with the goals and strategies of the producers.
  • Northern breeds are already very narrow within-breed diversity and very prone to the pest and diseases of the new environment.
  • Such production systems need institutional and technical support to its producers which the developing countries seldom provide.
  • Breeding decisions are increasingly taken out of the hands of farmers and herders. While relatively few Southern breeds have so far disappeared.
  • They have been selected for high yields and require standardized conditions and high inputs to exploit their genetic potential.
  • Exotic livestock breeds, especially poultry, and pig are in competition with the human population for food resources as they depend on the grains.
  • According to data collected by the FAO, 18 % of the 740 farm animal breeds that were recorded as extinct were bred from the South
  • However, among the breeds at risk, including the status endangered and critical, 60% are from the South and this proportion is expected to increase.
  • However, if the risk factors “change of husbandry”, “expansion of large-scale intensive livestock production” or “people giving up herding or farming” are taken into account, then the South could become the hotspot of breed loss of the 21st century.
  • Southern governments need to recognize their contribution to breed development and secure their access to grazing and water, services and education.
Chicken breeding
The native chicken are highly adapted and resilient to many avian infections

It is time to raise your voice

In short, the time is reached to raise voices against gene piracy and future food control. The planet is mother earth for all. Let stop playing with nature to earn money and fatten banks. Let raise our voice against manipulating the genetic makeup of flora and fauna. Gene patient is one the dangerous weapon to control the state of future food. Gene is the creature of nature and our mother earth. No way to the patent gene.

Right, the based approach is the best tool in the present political situation of the world. Every individual and the living organism has the right to survival. Let’s stop depriving small-scale farmers of their rights. Let them survive and keep their system continue to produce healthy and natural food.

My friend donkey
Donkey is not only a strong but very good working animal.

LIFE Network

LIFE Network has introduced the livestock keeper’s rights. Join our hands and support the rights of livestock keepers. Here is the link to details of the livestock keeper’s rights.

http://www.pastoralpeoples.org/docs/Declaration_on_LKRs_with_initial%20signatories_6.pdf

4 thoughts on “Future Food Control – How do native genetic resources for food and agriculture ensure food soverignity?

  1. Noor Muhammad Jogezai November 1, 2011 / 10:01 pm

    It gives me a deep sense of profound pleasure while going through a wonderful piece of document composed by Dr. Abdul Raaziq, which not only serves as a ‘wake up call’ for all the concerned ones but equally provides some significant insight into the comprehension of the issues like ‘gene piracy’ and ‘food crisis’. The august readers and the esteemed writer would bear me out here that a common man, or more importantly a small scaled farmer or herder of live stock in a poor country like ours, is almost non-conversant with the A, B, Cs of such alarming but dormant issues, which, otherwise, do bear multifaceted adverse implications on their future chances of livelihood. In the name of ‘green revolution’ or ‘food diversity’, the multinational companies, in pursuit of their untiring efforts to earn more and more money, have played havoc to a phenomenal level not only to our indigenous flora & fauna but to the entire ecosystem of our mother planet earth. As a matter of fact, with their interventions, we have seen in most of the instances, that quantity of the stuff has increased many folds but at the cost of quality, taste, palatability etc etc. furthermore, their so called innovative moves have also resulted in appearance of some intricated medical problems, which are equally posing great medical challenges to cope with. I think there is dire need of mass awareness in this regard at all a level of the society. As a matter of fact, it is the ignorance coupled with sheer poverty which has kept our masses in darkness from the ill-designed nasty policies of the money hungers around the world in the guise of multinationals. They have been persistently draining out our precious resources in the name of development and piloting us to an uncertain future and a present marked by hunger, unrest, and turbulence. Such monsters are in fact civilized blood suckers, killing us so softly. Let’s be mindful of all their ill designs and not fall prey to any lure or lust and ensure that all God gifted treasures of the planet mother earth are utilized in a just & befitting manner for the progress and prosperity of mankind.

    Like

    • raziqkakar November 2, 2011 / 3:56 am

      Thanks for your comprehensive comments. Gene piracy and future food control move of multinationals are the major threat to climate change vulnerable societies like us. Likewise, you can see an article on Aljzeera website (01/11/2011) about the eggplant gene piracy by Monsanto in India. The link of Aljazeera’s article is available at my blog.
      I wish and hope for further feedback from your side.

      Like

  2. raziqkakar August 24, 2016 / 7:41 am

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