April 24th 2016 - Ireland's Food Sovereignty Proclamation Day.
Let’s make April 24th 2016 - the real date that marks the Easter Rising - Ireland’s food sovereignty proclamation day. And let's eat and tweet about it. Here's the why and how.
April 24th 2016 is the actual 100th anniversary of the 1916 rising. On that date a century ago, a visionary proclamation was read out to unsuspecting passers by. Within a few short years, all had changed, changed utterly. After the recent state-sponsored and quite sanitised commemoration at Easter just past, will there be more of a people’s remembering – a celebration of the ideas in that fateful document - on the 24th?
One way to do this is to rally around the Irish Food Sovereignty Proclamation. For the last couple of years, a dedicated bunch have made their way to Mayo to meet when the Afri famine commemoration walk happens. There, these citizens - farmers, growers, eaters, organisers and more – have developed a food sovereignty proclamation for Ireland. Most of this work was done at the second Food Sovereignty Assembly on May 15 2015. These Assemblies connect Ireland up to a global food sovereignty movement - including La Via Campesina and the Nyeleni Process initiated in Mali in 2007 - which seeks to protect and promote rural small scale local food producers.
Food Sovereignty, at its simplest, is about people regaining control over food. It’s about people getting far more involved in the what, where, how and why of food: what is produced; where is it produced; how is it produced and distributed; why is it grown or reared the way it is? It’s about the right to food - making good food available and affordable to all. It’s about helping our local quality food producers - and workers - make a decent living. It’s about treating the earth - its climate, its seeds, all its resources - respectfully. It’s also something you can interpret and develop for yourself, based on these core principles.
From the food sovereignty proclamation:
We recognise that Food Sovereignty is about more than just local food - it is about rights – our rights to access land, resources, seeds and knowledge. It is also about the welfare of the planet, about low-input farming systems that feed our people while responding to the challenge of climate change. It is about democracy, about the voices of our people and about how we organize ourselves. It is about the rights of women. It is about our societies living at peace with each other and with our planet. It is about recognising our place in the generational flow that includes our ancestors and our descendants.
Here’s an idea. Let’s make April 24th 2016 Ireland’s food sovereignty proclamation day. Let’s make an extra special effort to eat food that really reflects the sentiment of this document of ours. And let’s tell the world about it. Gather with friends, family or neighbours and get together a meal that best reflects Ireland’s food sovereignty proclamation - wherever you are. It can be simple or splendid. Even if you happen to eat alone that day - make a meal of it! Do up a dish that says yes to local, careful, loving food producers.
Here’s how we tell Ireland and the world about our food sovereignty proclamation:
1: Get your self a #foodsov meal together - you, your mates, a big group - whatever.
2:Take a snap of the dish and/or gathering.
3: Go onto social media – twitter, instagram or facebook - attach the picture, and write a short message about the dish.
4: Hashtag the message with #foodsov and link to the food sovereignty proclamation.
Wherever you are eating, whatever you feel is the most apt thing to eat’n’tweet –do it and tell the world! On this day, let’s make our food sovereignty proclamation shine. Let's use this day - April 24th – to springboard food sovereignty in Ireland. April 24th is but one day - there are many more days and ways to connect with people and producers. So remember eat, snap, write a wee message, #foodsov, link to our food sovereignty proclamation and then, just tweet it!