We Feed the World features the extraordinary stories of 50 communities around the world. From fisherman in the artic north to the farmers in the Colombian Amazon, the images and stories take you on a journey to across six continents, giving you a glimpse of agroecology on action. These are the men and women that produce 70 % of the world’s food every day and in doing so, help to address many of the other issues we currently face. From climate change to the loss of biodiversity, from our rising health challenges to the wellbeing of our communities. Here are just a few of the stories to come…

  • Southern Roots Organics CSA, Dorset, UK

    We Feed the World…with healthy, nutritious food.

    Dee Butterly and Adam Payne are part of a movement of young new entrant farmers who are returning to the land with the intention of making a social and environmental difference. At just 27, they made the decision to set up Southern Roots Organics Community Supported Agriculture scheme (CSA), with the mission of producing affordable, nutritious food available in their local community in West Dorset.

    Based at Lower Hewood Farm, their 2.5 acre market garden, they now provide vegetable boxes to 50 households as well as supplying 15 shops and restaurants within a 10 mile radius. Also, as representatives of the Landworkers’ Alliance – a grassroots union of farmers, growers and land-based workers around the UK – they campaign for a better food system and the rights of small-scale farmers.

    In any given season they produce over 50 different types of vegetables using more than 200 varieties of seed. At the same time, they want to ensure that good food is available to all. Dee says “We are farming in a time when there is such inequality in our food system and a stark imbalance over who is able to access nutritious produce and eat well. We want people to feel and know they have a right to good healthy food and we try and provide it with much care and respect to both the land and our local communities.’

     

    Photographs by Sian Davey

  • Yangdong, Guizhou, China

    Dong Community, China taken by Zhang Kechun

    We Feed the World…in harmony with other species

    In the mountain village of Yangdong in the Guizhou province of Southwestern China, ethnic Dong farmers harvest their rice on six-hundred year old rice terraces, using farming methods hail back to the Han dynasty and involve an ancient and symbiotic relationship between man, animals and nature. Each rice paddy hosts hundreds of species of animals, insects, amphibians, fish and wild plants.

    These ancient methods are in stark contrast with China’s agricultural machine which has already surpassed all other countries on agrochemical production, consumption and pollution. Every year, nearly two million tonnes of pesticides are poured into the Chinese landscape creating more pollution than all the country’s factories put together and causing significant issues for any life in its way.

    The Dong people take a very different approach. All nature is regarded as sacred and having a spirit. During harvest, as a way of giving back to nature, a small portion of the crop is left for the birds and even the rats. Oxen are revered and considered the driving force of the paddies, as well as the principal fertilisers. Traditional wisdom has taught the Dong to maintain a balance between the human population and nature. The community say, “Animals and all living things have a spirit. Even the old trees, springs and rivers. We must trust them and work with them, not against them”.

     

    Photographs by Zhang Kechun

  • Filhos Da Terra, MST, Alagoas, Brazil

    MST, Alagoas, Brazil taken by Bruno Morais

    We Feed the World..and provide work for All

    Forty years ago, the families of the Filhos da Terra community worked as labourers on the sugar plantation of Ouricuri, earning minimum wages to produce sugar for the insatiable export market. When the landowner refused to pay their wages, they were left with two options. They could either abandon their homes and migrate to the overcrowded slums of nearby cities or take back the very thing they needed to lead a more dignified and productive life – Land.

    The community occupied the unused plantation land and started to build shelters and grow food. The landlord hired armed militia to remove them. The next 13 years were a struggle of violent conflict until finally, the government granted the community the right to stay and feed themselves from the land they grew up on. Today, Filhos da Terra is just one of thousands of communities across Brazil who form the biggest social movement in Latin America, MST (Movement of Landless Workers). Their motto and driving force reads; “Fight, build People’s Agrarian Reform”.