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Two papers analysing the recent experience of Latin America, and Cuba in particular, support arguments that a shift from industrial-large scale farming to small-scale farming can bring environmental, economic and political benefits.
In March 2011, Olivier de Schutter, the UN Rapporteur for the Right to Food released a report: “Agro-ecology and the right to food” before the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva. Based on an extensive review of recent scientific literature, the report demonstrates that agroecology, if sufficiently supported, can double food production in entire regions within 10 years while mitigating climate change and alleviating rural poverty.
Editor’s Note: Canadian Geographer Alison Blay-Palmer looks back on a trip to Cuba to study urban agriculture. It documents how Cuba responded to a major economic and nutritional crisis by turning to urban agriculture.