SF Bay Area

Organic Agriculture in Cuba

Family run organic farm called Finca Paraiso.

The Cuban revolution in 1959 brought sweeping land reforms and social programs aimed at eradicating rural poverty. However, agricultural policies were deeply influenced by the global trend toward industrial-corporate agriculture known as the Green Revolution. The Green Revolution has negative effects; it produces massive unnatural mono-cultures crops that require vast amounts of land, large quantities of water, petrochemical fertilizer, pesticides and farming equipment. Plus all this equipment requires burning fossil fuels, contributing to pollution, and global warming. The high cost of industrial-corporate farming is beyond the means of small farmers.

 The collapse of the former Soviet bloc between 1989 and 1991 led to a collapse in Cuba’s subsidies and foreign trade in a context of the crippling economic blockade maintained on Cuba by the US since 1960. GDP plummeted 35% by 1993 and there were critical scarcities of hydrocarbon energy resources, fertilizers, food imports, medicines, cement, equipment and resources in every sector.

The Cuban government responded to a food crisis in September 1993 by eliminating the majority of state farms and turning them into basic units of cooperative production. Much of the 80 per cent of all farmland that was once held by the state was turned over to the workers and re-established as worker-owned enterprises. Although peasants did not own the land, they were allowed to rent the land indefinitely and free of charge as long as they continued to meet production quotas for their key crops.

Food crops produced in excess of these quotas could be freely sold at farmers markets, thereby providing a price incentive for farmers to effectively use new technologies such as organic fertilizers, pesticides, compost, the integration of grazing animals, and crop-rotation techniques. Tractors were replaced with human and animal labor. Farmers also revived traditional techniques such as inter-cropping, earthworms and manuring in order to increase production yields.  

Public policies also supported urban organic agriculture through the Programa Nacional de Agricultura Urbana (National Programme of Urban Agriculture) in 1994, which was designed to encourage urban farmers to produce diversified, healthy and fresh products. Havanans transformed their vacant lots and backyards into small farms and grazing areas for animals. This resulted in 350,000 new well-paying jobs (out of a total workforce of 5 million), 4 million tons of fruits and vegetables produced annually in Havana (up tenfold in a decade) and a city of 2.2 million agriculturally self-sufficient inhabitants.2

While ensuring national food security under a trade embargo, Cuba’s transition to organic agriculture has also had a positive impact on people’s livelihoods by guaranteeing a steady income for a significant proportion of the population. Moreover, the lack of pesticides for agricultural production is likely to have a positive long-term impact on Cubans’ well being since such chemicals are often associated with various negative health implications such as certain forms of cancer.

Cuba is a Green/Peace Economy success story. With the loss of capital to support state-industrial-corporate petro-chemical depended, ecological degrading farms, lead Cuba to the creation of an alternative model of development that places ecology and the Cuban people at its core.

Sources:

UN Green Economy Success Stories.

1. Rosset et al., Surviving Crisis in Cuba : The Second Agrarian Reform and Sustainable Agriculture, (p.226), Available at:http://www.foodfirst.org/files/bookstore/pdf/promisedland/12.pdf
2. Andy Fisher, The Exceptional Nature of Cuban Urban Agriculture, (2010), Available at:http://civileats.com/2010/04/21/the-exceptional-nature-of-cuban-urban-ag…

Helen Yaffe: Cuba’s green revolution-achieving sustainability.

cp_banner
CodePink is a women's grassroots-initiated, worldwide organization of women and men working for peace, social justice and a green economy. CodePink SF serves the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond.


 

Actions
Jan
24
Wed
5:30 PM SF Weekly Peace Vigil: @ Peace Banner
SF Weekly Peace Vigil: @ Peace Banner
Jan 24 @ 5:30 PM – 6:30 PM
SF Weekly Peace Vigil: @ Peace Banner | San Francisco | California | United States
 JOIN US CODEPINK, World Can’t Wait, Occupy SF and others for our weekly (most Wednesdays) PEACE VIGIL WEDNESDAY, June 14th, 5:30-6:30 p.m. at the huge PEACE banner  at One Post Street in San Francisco. (on the steps facing Market Street, below Feinstein’s[...]
Jan
26
Fri
12:00 PM Divest from Lockheed Martin
Divest from Lockheed Martin
Jan 26 @ 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
Divest from Lockheed Martin
Join CodePink  and Pacific Life as we kick off the Divest from the War Machine Campaign against Lockheed Martin.  Lockheed is the largest weapons manufacturer in the US, responsible for missiles that carry nuclear warheads,[...]
Jan
29
Mon
3:00 PM Occupy Beale AFB, January 29 & 30
Occupy Beale AFB, January 29 & 30
Jan 29 @ 3:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Occupy Beale AFB, January 29 & 30
  Theme: ABOLISH ARMED DRONES!     Join Codepink, Veterans for Peace and other N. Calif. Activists.   End the scourge of drone killing in 2018.  No more war crimes in our name! STOP KILLING[...]
Feb
11
Sun
12:00 PM Monthly CODEPINK GOLDEN GATE BRI... @ Golden Gate Bridge
Monthly CODEPINK GOLDEN GATE BRI... @ Golden Gate Bridge
Feb 11 @ 12:00 PM – 2:00 PM
Monthly CODEPINK GOLDEN GATE BRIDGE WALK for PEACE: @ Golden Gate Bridge
Monthy CodePink Golden Gate Bridge Walk for Peace. SUNDAY: Noon:  Gather at Bridge Plaza (across the street from the parking lot), SF side, or  Marin end of the eastern walkway of the Golden Gate Bridge We’ll walk to[...]
Gatherings
Jan
27
Sat
10:00 AM Conference on Drone Warfare @ Pacific School of Religion Chapel
Conference on Drone Warfare @ Pacific School of Religion Chapel
Jan 27 @ 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Conference on Drone Warfare @ Pacific School of Religion Chapel | Berkeley | California | United States
SF Bay Area Interfaith Conference on Drone Warfare Scroll to bottom of this page and complete information to register for this free event. Presenters include: Marjorie Cohn, professor emerita at Thomas Jefferson School of Law. The[...]
6:45 PM One Billion Rising
One Billion Rising
Jan 27 @ 6:45 PM – 9:00 PM
One Billion Rising
TransDance Ritual Benefit for Bay Area Rising   Dance Alive Your Embodiment, Blessings and Belonging A Women’s TransDance Ritual with Heather Munro Pierce Come dive into the dance in a safe and supportive space to release and[...]
Feb
6
Tue
7:00 PM CodePink San Jose Gathering @ Peace & Justice Center
CodePink San Jose Gathering @ Peace & Justice Center
Feb 6 @ 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM
CodePink San Jose Gathering @ Peace & Justice Center
Hi Pinkos, Next planning meeting for the Divest from the War Machine campaign will be on Tuesday, Feb 6 at 7pm at the Peace & Justice Center. . Last meeting we chose the University of San Jose State as[...]
Feb
14
Wed
6:45 PM One Billion Rising.
One Billion Rising.
Feb 14 @ 6:45 PM – 9:00 PM
One Billion Rising.
  Journey to Belonging Celebrating the World We Wish to Weave… Along with the global One Billion Rising Solidarity movement, we stand up and speak out against violence against women and girls and affirm our vision for a world[...]

PinkBridgeDivider

 

WORLD

PinkBridgeDivider

ARTS

  • Book Launch Stirs Controversy. December 13, 2015 editorBook Launch Stirs Controversy. The book launch event for EXTRAORDINARY RENDITION: AMERICAN WRITERS ON PALESTINE at the Center for Fiction on ...
  • The Blanket of Hope January 25, 2015 editorThe Blanket of Hope                                                              The Blanket of Hope This is the Blanket of Hope. Prophecy is woven in its threads. ...

PinkBridgeDivider

GREEN ECONOMY

PinkBridgeDivider

From our National Site

The national CodePink organization organizes for justice for Iraqis and to hold war criminals accountable. CodePink actively opposes the U.S. war in Afghanistan, torture, the detention center at Guantanamo, weaponized and spy drones, the prosecution of whistleblowers, U.S. support for the Israeli occupation of Palestine and repressive regimes.

Rooted in a network of local organizers, CodePink's tactics include satire, street theatre, creative visuals, civil resistance, and directly challenging powerful decision-makers in government and corporations. And, of course, wearing pink!

http://www.codepink.org/press_releases