Stories of Resilience Built Through Agroecology

Biowatch farmers speak out about living and thriving in troubled times 2020–2022: COVID-19, social upheavals, unrest, extreme weather ...

The two years starting from the onset of the COVID-19 lockdown in March 2020, to the civil unrest in July 2021 and the extreme floods in 2022 were unprecedented in terms intersecting crises. During this challenging period communication between Biowatch and the farmers we support suggested that, on the whole, they were coping. To confirm this anecdotal evidence, we commissioned a survey of 24 farmers, including long-standing and recent agroecology adopters, in nine areas in different parts of KwaZulu-Natal.

The farmers’ voices and stories offered in this book provide insight into the multiple dimensions in which agroecology benefits rural communities and builds resilience in the face of intersecting climate, biodiversity, water and food crises and the ensuing social and political upheavals that loom ahead of us locally, regionally and globally.

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Agroecology Is Best Practice

Showcasing Biowatch’s work with farmers in four key areas (diversity; soil and water; seed; advocacy), this book explores the workings of eight homestead farms in northern KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, illustrating agroecology best practices through the personal experiences of each of the smallholder farmers.

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A Landmark Victory for Justice

November 2014

Anyone campaigning for environmental or social justice needs to read this David and Goliath account of how a reasonable request for access to GMO permit applications catapulted an environmental watch-dog into almost a decade of litigation against the South African state and monolithic Monsanto - a battle finally won in the Constitutional Court.

Written by Biowatch founder trustees Rachel Wynberg and David Fig, this book provides an insider's perspective on the organisational toll and lessons learnt, and serves as an inspiration to civil society and a warning to those pursuing narrow profit motives at the expense of the environment.

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