Food Sovereignty in Action at the Gill Tract in Albany, California [View all]
Food Sovereignty in Action at the Gill Tract in Albany, California USA Posted April 24th, 2012
Report by Food First intern, Vishrut Arya. April 24, 2012
This past Sunday, April 22, Earth Day, about two hundred farmers, families, and activists gathered for a potluck at Ohlone Park in Berkeley to celebrate the Earth and food sovereignty.
The idea of Food sovereignty, promoted by the international small farmer movement, La Via Campesina is that communities have the right to control their own equitable and sustainable food systems, including access to land, fresh water, and seed.
The group ended their march through Berkeley on Sunday afternoon at the Gill Tract in Albany, CA—the last 10 acres of pristine agricultural land in the urbanized East Bay. While the Gill Tract is public land, the University of California at Berkeley which administers the site, is proposing to privatize this unique public asset by constructing commercial retail space, for-profit senior housing, and a Whole Foods Supermarket.
Two UC police officers visited as planting of 15,000 plants commenced on Sunday afternoon, saying they would be back at 10 PM to make arrests. Around midnight a few officers came and had what was reported to be a peaceful conversation with the group. Nonetheless, they warned that police action would take place the following day. ...............(more)