Expert advice can help G20 Agriculture meeting deal with soaring food prices says Friends of the Earth

June 21st, 2011 by Friends of the Earth

The G20 Agriculture meeting takes place on 22 June 2011.  In advance of this meeting, Friends of the Earth warns that rising food prices and large-scale hunger will only be prevented by overhauling the EU’s farming policy and ending biofuel targets and food commodity speculation.

Ministers from the world’s 20 leading economies will meet in Paris on 22 and 23 June to address recent food price volatility.

Friends of the Earth is urging the Ministers to listen to the latest expert advice on the action needed to combat the food crisis.

UN food expert and Special Rappourteur on the right to food, Olivier de Schutter, in his report, “The Common Agricultural Policy towards 2020: The role of the European Union in supporting the realization of the right to food“, released on 17 June, called for an end to European faming policies that rely on large imports of livestock feed.  He also criticised speculation on food commodities by banks, hedge funds and private investors.

Last week a leaked document from leading international organisations including the World Bank blamed biofuels targets for soaring food prices.

Friends of the Earth Food Campaigner Kirtana Chandrasekaran said, “Leading scientists and economists are calling on our leaders to stop pumping global food supplies into fuel and animal feed.

“Europe has a golden opportunity to steer a new farm policy that will help end the daily struggle to put food on the table for millions of people around the world.

“Ditching biofuels targets and factory farming subsidies will help tackle soaring food prices.

“Ministers must control the trading of food supplies and refocus on access to affordable local food for everyone.”

Friends of the Earth is calling for:

  • An end to biofuels targets in Europe
  • A shift from factory farming using imported feed to local planet-friendly farming
  • Regulation of speculation in food commodities
  • European Governments to strengthen small farmers ability to feed themselves
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