Request for Nominations for 2012 Food Sovereignty Prize

Download the call for nominations:

Submit nominations online:

Deadline: June 4, 2012

Description of Prize

People worldwide are taking back their food systems – fighting for their land and waterways, reclaiming vacant lots, teaching others how to grow food, and developing distribution systems – while simultaneously creating jobs, providing fresh food, preserving the environment, building rural-urban connections,  advocating for just policies, and revitalizing their communities.  In recognition and celebration of these struggles, which are part of the global movement for food sovereignty, the Community Food Security Coalition (CFSC), the US Food Sovereignty Alliance, and allied organizations will award the Fourth Annual Food Sovereignty Prize in October 2012 at a ceremony in New York City.

The recipient of this prize will have contributed significantly to the movement for food sovereignty through grassroots action, raising awareness, and/or developing and implementing new programs and policies.  The prize recipient will be invited to attend, address, and participate in the 2012 Food Sovereignty Prize Ceremony with all expenses paid.

Past winners include:

2011:  Winner – the Landless Workers Movement (MST) (Brazil); Honorable Mentions – the Grow BioIntensive Agricultural Centre of Kenya; Movimiento Campesino-a-Campesino/Farmer-to-Farmer Movement (Latin America); and the South Central Farmers of Los Angeles (U.S.)

2010:  Winner – Family Farm Defenders (U.S.); Honorable Mentions – ROPPA (West Africa), Working Group on Indigenous Food Sovereignty (Canada); and Detroit Black Community Food Security Network (U.S.)

2009:  Winner – La Via Campesina (Worldwide); Honorable Mentions – African Insect Science for Food and Health (Kenya), Toronto Food Policy Council (Canada); and Community Alliance for Global Justice (U.S.)

What is Food Sovereignty? 

Food sovereignty, the right of people to determine their own food and agriculture policies, goes well beyond ensuring that all people have sufficient food to meet their physical needs.  It asserts that people must reclaim their power of decision-making in the food system by rebuilding the relationships between people and the land, and between food providers and those who eat.  First framed by the international peasant movement La Via Campesina at the World Food Summit in 1996, food sovereignty stems from global struggles over food, land, water, and livelihoods.  These struggles have intensified over time as corporate control of agricultural production, fisheries, and food processing and distribution threatens our food systems.  Corporations extract record earnings from consumers, particularly low-wage and working class families, while threatening the livelihoods of peasants and indigenous communities dependent upon land and water access to grow and harvest food.  Families are literally robbed of their homes, food, income, and even lives.  While transnational corporations and many governments profit from neoliberalism—the market-driven approach to social and economic policy stressing the ‘efficiency’ of private enterprise and free trade—food sovereignty offers a powerful alternative based on the following principles:

1.    Access to safe, nutritious, and culturally appropriate food is a basic human right.

2.    Agrarian reform is necessary to return ownership and control to landless and indigenous peoples,   rural women, and peasant farmers and fishers.

3.    Natural resources, especially land, water, seeds, fish and livestock, must be protected through sustainable care and use, as well as conservation of biodiversity without patents.

4.    Food is first and foremost a source of nutrition, and only secondarily an item of trade.

5.    Corporate control over agriculture, fishing and food, promoted by multilateral institutions and speculative capital, facilitates the “globalization of hunger” and must be challenged.

6.    Everyone has the right to live free from violence, displacement, and oppression—food is not a weapon.

7.    Small-scale food providers, particularly women, must have direct and democratic input into formulating food policies.

Criteria for Prize Recipient

The recipient must be an organization or movement that:

  • has performed significant work to promote food sovereignty by raising public awareness, organizing on-the-ground action, or developing and implementing programs and policies;
  • recognizes the importance of collective action in bringing about social change
  • recognizes global linkages in food sovereignty work;
  • recognizes and prioritizes the leadership of women, indigenous peoples, people of color, migrant workers and other food providers marginalized by the global food system.

While the roots of food sovereignty are largely rural, the Food Sovereignty Prize recognizes that urban communities fighting for control over their food are an important part of this global struggle.

Organizations involved in the Food Sovereignty Prize Task Force are not eligible to receive the Prize.

The Food Sovereignty Prize Task Force is seeking nominations until June 4, 2012.  To submit a nomination, please fill out the nomination form at If you do not have internet access, please mail the below information to CFSC, 3830 SE Division, Portland, OR 97202:

1)     The name, contact information, and point person for the group you wish to nominate.

2)     A 350-word (maximum) description clearly outlining how the nominee meets the above criteria and supporting that nominee as the best choice for this prize:

Provide examples of how the group has:
– organized grassroots action
– raised public awareness
– developed and implemented policies and programs

3)     Contact information for up to three (3) references.  (These references can include anyone from community partners to supporters, etc.)

4)     Any supplementary information to further highlight the work of the nominee will be appreciated. Supplementary information might consist of articles, press releases or similar items. Please include no more than 5 supplementary materials.

The 2012 Food Sovereignty Prize winner(s) will be announced by July 31st,  2012.

Erica Steckl
Community Food Security Coalition
3830 SE Division St. | Portland, OR 97202
503-954-2970 x203 |

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s