In recent weeks, a wave of solidarity from many parts of Brazil and from several countries around the world has reached southern Minas Gerais, in support of the resistance of the 450 farming families, who have organised and lived at camp “Quilombo Campo Grande” over the past 22 years. The African Centre for Biodiversity (ACB) joins this wave of solidarity and sends its support to the evicted families and all those who resist in Minas Gerais and in all parts of Brazil.
An unproven genetically modified (GM) RNAi cassava variety is yet another staple food crop, after maize and banana, on the biotech industry’s agenda for commercial cultivation in Kenya. The brazen lack of safety tests contained in the Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organisation’s (KARLO's) application for cultivation, and disregard for adherence to biosafety best practise and disease resistance, has galvanised civil society and farmer organisations to demand reinstatement of the ban on GMOs.
Uncle Wiz is a shining example of a thriving small scale farming and food distribution business that not only farms without chemicals but also focuses on and promotes indigenous food crops. Owners Wisdom and Mpumi Edward live in south Johannesburg and farm on land in Vanderbijlpark. Not only do they grow many indigenous African crops that have been sidelined but they also specialise in growing and processing traditional African herbs, particularly those used in Nigerian cooking, such as bitter leaf, scent leaf and Ugu pumkin leaf, among many others. Through social media, they share recipes to raise awareness on using herbs in cooking, not only to make tasty traditional meals but also for the health benefits. This has led to greater demand from customers who were not using herbs in the past. In addition to a shop they sell online and run a delivery service.