Help Nigeria to build their next generation of farmers

Last month we launched a Revolving Loan Fund in support of USMEFAN – the United Small and Medium Scale Farmers’ Associations of Nigeria.  The fund has been set up to encourage young people into farming.

Despite what we’re told, about 70 % of the world’s food comes from farms that are small to medium sized, mixed, low-input, and labour-intensive.  Small farms also employ 40% of the world’s people.

But small farms don’t make the maximum profit and so, worldwide, they are systematically done down. So most farmers – in the richest countries as well as the poorest — are poor.

Young people, who should form the next generation of farmers, are leaving the land in droves.

If we care about the future we have to stop the rot – and here is one opportunity to do so – in one of the world’s richest but also most desperate countries: NIGERIA.

For further details including how to donate click here

9 thoughts on “The Campaign

  1. Supporting ‘real farming’ can help biodiversity, rekindle our rural economy and conserve energy. However it will also save rainforests.

    28 million acres of rainforest are being destroyed every year, at this rate, in 49 years time they will have vanished. Without these forests, the world’s ecosystem is in danger of collapse and half of all species will become extinct.

    Intensive farming relies more and more on giving livestock soy based feed. The increasing demand for soy, has resulted in plantations appearing where primary rainforests once stood. Palm oil too, is in over half of all processed food as well as biofuel, cosmetics and cleaning products.

    Oil palm plantations, like soy are spreading fast, destroying one of the most important ecosystems on the planet, to provide short-term profits for the companies involved and the unwitting consumer with ‘unhealthy’ processed foods.

    The value of the world’s natural capital is estimated at $5 trillion per annum (Pavan Sukhdev 2010).

    The consequences of ignoring the hidden ingredients in the food chain are environmental collapse on a scale that cannot be imagined. The IAP (Interacademy Panel on International Issues) Statement on Tropical Forests and Climate Change December 2009 reports ‘ …deforestation and over-exploitation in tropical regions are major contributors to the sixth global mass extinction event. The loss of this store of genetic diversity will compromise the capacity of all life on earth to adapt to human-induced climate change.

    We can farm sustainably, enhance biodiversity and leave rainforests standing. The Campaign for Real Farming is a movement I support as it presents the best solution.

    At home we are learning to cook with seasonal food, on Sunday morning we stock up at the farmer’s market in the middle of Brixton. Funnily enough we now feel more in control of our family diet and our children understand why we are choosing to consume differently.

    The film ‘Green’ by Patrick Rouxel can be watched online, and it makes the point about consumption and deforestation brilliantly.

  2. Hi Colin, Sounds interesting. I am an organic farmer in Devon and have been thinking a lot recently about how the people could reclaim the land for their own use. I like the idea of your college. I was thinking along the lines of getting anyone interested in using land (correctly), to get some kind of relevant education that would then entitle them to the use of some land.
    As I think you are sort of saying, once the movement reaches a point of critical mass, I reckon land will be put forward to meet demand.
    Anyway, please keep me informed of any interesting developments.
    Kind Regards
    Tom Widdicombe

  3. Congratulations on your initiative. My interest focuses primarily on livestock production in non-intensive systems (i.e. on extensive / upland / marginal grazing).

  4. Excellent idea. I am writing a thesis on how the global trade laws inhibit the development of enlightened agriculture. Happy to help where I can. I also live in Oxford so can be available.

    best,

    Mariya Talib

  5. Hello Colin – I have just found the web site, having found the address on your ‘Good Food For Everyone’ book.

    The web site looks interesting.

    The book is so comforting – my partner and myself have never come across anyone so much in tune with our own frustrated feelings. She works in environmental education for an organisation that hardly knows what the environment is, and I work in conservation for a local authority that sees SSSIs as dog loos…

    We are both based in Oxfordshire so I hope we get to one of your lectures soon…

    Regards,
    Keith

  6. And how exactly do people get involved with the Campaign and the College?

    David

  7. I am designing a leaflet for the Green & Away conference ‘Let’s grow food – 8 steps back to the land’ and require a high resolution verion of your logo. My apologiess – this is a rush job, any chance of a reply by 19th may.

    Regards
    Jac Solomons
    Brazen Design

  8. Dear Campign for Real Farming,

    Coventry University’s Centre for Agroecology and Food Security are running two CPD courses in November, one is High Carbon Farming – How to do it and the other is Water Security in the Landscape. Both courses are being led by Darren Doherty the leading regenerative agriculturist from Australia and they are the first of their kind in the UK.

    More information on the courses can be found at http://www.coventry.ac.uk/CAFS

    We wondered whether you would be able to circulate this to any of your colleagues who might be interested in the event and also whether we could possibly advertise these courses on your events calendar and through your newsletter.

    I look forward to hearing from you.

    Harvi Dhamrat

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