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UK | The Grassroots Groups Shifting Ground on Land Justice

The racialised history of British soil has consequences that are very much felt today. However where industrial scale farming is failing, the grassroots is doing what it does best, building fertile ground for a new food system that nurtures diversity. High-profile agroecology events such as this weekend’s Land Skills Fair are spotlighting land justice. This is thanks to the work of many projects that together are gradually shifting the ground for land justice. Ursula Billington reports. […]

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Hungary | The Last Smallholders Part III

Rural Hungary has been Viktor Orbán’s ticket to three terms in power. With the April 2022 elections approaching, is there a chance for emancipation from authoritarian populist rule to arise from this very same countryside? Drawing on original research, Péter József Bori and Noémi Gonda argue that by reforming our ways of producing food, we can also initiate a radical reform of the undemocratic systems that govern us. Final installment of an exclusive three-part series. […]

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Hungary | The Last Smallholders Part II

Our second installment here explains how Orbán and his FIDESZ party backtracked on their promises after their election in 2010. What followed is a decade of land grabbing, destructive agricultural transformation and the alienation of Hungary’s last smallholders – all while maintaining the image of a pro-peasant government. Original research by Péter József Bori and Noémi Gonda. […]

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Hungary | The Last Smallholders Part I

In Viktor Orbán’s Hungary, the rural vote will have a crucial role to play in the upcoming April elections. Orbán has been milking farmers’ grievances for over a decade. Have the nation’s smallholders had enough? Revealing the findings of new research, Péter József Bori and Noémi Gonda track the progress of feudal dynamics in the Hungarian countryside. First in a three-part series. […]

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Oxford Real Farming Conference 2022 | Plenty To Chew On!

The New Year gets off to an exciting start with the Oxford Real Farming Conference on January 5th-7th 2022. Back online this year, the conference has added social justice strings to its bow with new partners that focus on land rights and  equality. As well as the traditional menu of sessions on sustainable farming practices and policy, food sovereignty and supply chains, the event will bring in indigenous perspectives from around the globe. Ursula Billington reports on what not to miss. […]

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Letter From The Farm | Meet The New Peasants

Isabella Lang has been working on her friends’ farm in the Austrian Alps since the spring. After four years in the Brussels bubble, she was keen to get her hands back in the soil. It’s been several months of hard work, long days, amazing food, and a healthy pace of life. In this first letter Isabella introduces us to the farm. Meet the new peasants. […]

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France | Tasting Independence in Beaufortain

In this excerpt from the book “Rural Europe on the Move: A travel guide to transitions”, Philippe Barret tells the story of Beaufortain, a community in the French Alps that has been coming together to practice rural sustainability since the 17th century. Beaufortain also happens to be the home of ARC2020’s project to build rural resilience in France – “Nos campagnes en résilience”. In this chapter you’ll meet some of the key people involved in this latest venture: coordinator Valérie Geslin, volunteer Jeanine Sochas, and farmer Pierre Gachet.  […]

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France | Lessons from Agricultural Archeology

Since he first set foot in Vachères-en-Quint in La Drôme, France, almost half a century ago, Sjoerd Wartena has followed in the footsteps of the older generation, who taught him how to farm and raise animals in these austere uplands. Still fascinated by the ways of our predecessors, he has taken to tracing the remnants of farming practices indigenous to the area. Here he reflects on what we can learn from past generations and their ability to adapt to harsh conditions. […]

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France | Letter To The Next Generation

Sjoerd Wartena first went “back to nature” almost half a century ago. In this letter to the younger generation he reflects on our relationship with nature and the land, the importance of modelling change, and the role of humility and compassion in giving humanity a second chance. […]

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Czech Republic | Wrangling with the Next Generation

Meet Czech farmer Terezie Daňková, who raises cattle and sheep on a 450 ha. ranch on mostly rented land in Southern Bohemia, with the help of her cowgirl daughter Barbora (20), her son Vojtěch (13), and a stable of horses. Louise Kelleher speaks to two generations of women farmers about the realities of rural life, the pull of the city, and what brings them back to the farm. […]

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Your Land, My Land, Our Land: Using International Legal Tools

It’s now easier than ever to use international tools to fight for access to land. By crafting a strategy and tooling up with the right legislation, social movements and civil society organisations can achieve wins for land rights — as we can learn from the Sami people’s historic victory earlier this year, write Astrid Bouchedor, Attila Szocs, Philip Seufert, and Fernando García-Dory. […]