November 21, 2019

The relationship between food politics and land politics can

The
relationship between food politics and land politics can be said to be closely
related. The ownership and control of land is an important factor to consider
when discussing the food -land nexus. The question of food politics can be
centered on what is to be produced, where, how much and how, by whom, and with
what patterns of distribution and consumption? The global community is being
faced with the difficulty of tackling these questions, as it is that the most
people with vast land and primarily the plantation workers, indigenous people,
or pastoralists are the hungriest because they cannot afford to buy food or
have full access to food. Answers to these questions would benefit the state or
market, but would unavoidably raise issue of politics, power and social
justice.

There is a need
to critically look at the link between land and food and its implication for
social justice. Even though much attention is being given to the peasant or
farmers, but this doesn’t stop the food insecurity problem (hike in food
prices), ownership and control of the land, and the will to operate
independently. The landless laborers don’t have the autonomy to trade or
consume what they like. This land-food relationship gave rise to a debate of
land reform globally, Lipton (2009) explained that these land reform gives
security and opportunity to direct producers and prevent their exploitation by
more powerful actors and institutions. The land reform practically practiced in
some part of the world reduced rural poverty and inequality and also improved
lives and livelihoods of the rural poor. For example, in countries like China,
South Korea, Vietnam, and Kerala (Griffin, Khan, and Ickowitz 2003; Herring
1983).

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However,
with the introduction of land reform in relation to pro-poor land policy, the
pro-poor land policy outcome sometimes could have a positive or negative effect
on the rural poor. There was a shift from contemporary land reform to the
question confronted by the societies of, what food is to be produced? Where?
How? How food is to be distributed in a context of insecurity of price regimes
and supply. It is evidently clear that these questions are not answered because
the land-based wealth and power, access and control over the land resources are
actually still being controlled by the corporate entities, state or other elite
community groups. Though every development policy is targeted to improve the
rural poor, but themes in pro-poor policy are controlled by the elite
community. The authors didn’t consider the elite by re-distributing the land
based wealth to the poor. This for example, could lead to violence and other
social vices in the community. The distribution and control of land should be
done in a sustainable way by considering the transfer of land based wealth to
the poor, transfer of land based political power, and also considering gender
and ethnic groups and how it could contribute to increasing land and labor
productivity.

 

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