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This section covers p2p-oriented and relocalization trends in agriculture and food production, as well as food sovereignty and land commons issues.

We are in the process of porting the related articles from our Ecology section. First column done so far.

For a closer watch of these developments, see our diigo tags:

  1. P2P-Agriculture
  2. P2P-Food

A shorter selection of our Encyclopedia below, see: Key Concepts and Practices from the P2P Open Agriculture Revolution

Please read this key insight by John Robb:


On the diversity of urban agriculture(s)

"We have city discussions about the need for a city policy on urban agriculture, instead of city discussions about the need for city policies to support various forms of urban agricultures.

To wit, the way cities agonize over a policy (note the singular) for urban agriculture (note the singular), rather than a suite of policies (note the plural) to help as many who are interested, for whatever reasons (note the plural), be they love or money, to eat foods (note the plural) they have grown or raised or foraged in varieties (note the plural) of spaces (note the plural) — from front yards, to back yards, to green roofs, to green walls, to balconies, to windowsills, to allotment gardens, to community gardens, to beehives, to butterfly gardens, to teaching and therapeutic gardens, to edible landscaping, to soil-based, hydroponic and aquaponic greenhouses, to vacant lots, to public orchards, to community composting centers, to grey water recycling for lawns and gardens, to formally-sited farms and meadows.

There are so many opportunities, so many points on the urban agricultures spectrum, that we can’t even say “urban agriculture is what it is.”

That fact is that “urban agricultures are what they are,” and city governments in different areas should embrace many of them.

Of course, public authorities need to practice their usual due diligence in terms of personal and public safety, but the emphasis of policy should not be on toleration or permission, but management and stewardship of the health, environmental, community and economic yields of urban ag.

This is in marked contrast to the present mode of civic management over urban agriculture. "

- Wayne Roberts [1]

The necessary transformation of our agricultural and food system

Daniel Pinchbeck:

"Relocalized organic agriculture is, in itself, a powerful adaptation strategy for climate change. A large scale transition to ecological and organic agriculture would sequester carbon already present in the atmosphere, and reduce future CO2 emissions substantially. A significant reduction of meat consumption, globally, is necessary to reduce CO2 pollution. Global training in organic agriculture and permaculture techniques, mass volunteer initiatives to create urban gardens and local farms, and promotion of vegetarian diets could help accelerate the transition to a resilient and regenerative food system.

The organic techniques that allow for the sequestration of carbon include integrated pest management using non-synthetics, crop rotation, cover crops, and increased soil microbial activity that allows agricultural fields to become carbon “sinks”. Biochar, a charcoal soil additive produced by burning biomass in an oxygen weak environment, can be infused into soil to sequester additional carbon. According to journalist Mark Herstgaard, “If biochar were added to 10 percent of global cropland… it would store 20 billion tons of CO2 equivalent—roughly equal to humanity’s annual greenhouse gas emissions.”

Permaculture and agroforestry farming practices offer the most integrated, resilient, functional, and spiritually rewarding forms of agriculture. Permaculture, a term coined by Bill Mollison and David Holgren in the late 70s, stands for “permanent agriculture.” Its success lies in proper design and integration with the landscape, from landforms to water sources. Permaculture’s “ratio of output to input is about 5 times as good as that achieved by the benchmark US farm.”

Today, agricultural produce often travels thousands of miles to market. While local food movements have been burgeoning, community and urban gardens can be established everywhere. Vacant lots, suitable rooftops, parks, and greenways can be transformed into community gardens, food forests, and medicinal plant habitats. It has been estimated that 80% of the food needed by New York City could be grown on urban rooftops, using aquaponics. Vertical farms in urban areas could also provide low-carbon solutions.

Designing agricultural systems that are decentralized and specialized will help maintain ecological and genetic diversity. Smaller plots can be structured into larger farming co-operatives, where social support, hardware, and labor can be shared and supplemented across farms where necessary." (

Typology of Participative and Commons-Based Urban Farming Systems

Jakob Vandevoorde en Babette Ryckaert:

Community Supported Agriculture

The system of CSA can be combined with other forms of consumer participation like self-harvest and vegetable subscriptions. CSA is based on a few principles that often recur in the other participation systems

  • Risk Spreading: by diversifying your crops you have a smaller loss in case of failed harvest but you can also diversify by cultivating vegetables, fruits and animals, hereby securing different revenue sources.
  • Sales Security: knowing for certain that you will be able to sell your crops allows you to make bigger and smarter investments.
  • Direct Sale: direct sale allows the farmers to ask a higher price for their products but also ensures a lower price for the consumer.
  • Sustainable and environmental agriculture: in order to get an official GSA-label you have to

prove that you work sustainably with an eye for energy consumption and biodiversity.

  • Local: selling your products locally allows you to have a direct relation with the customer and it reduces the carbon footprint of the products.
  • Family Business: GSA's are small enterprises without interference of big industrial corporations.


The self-harvest system has the intention to allow the consumer to harvest and choose their vegetables themselves. In this way the consumer participates in the labour needed for the efficient working of the organisation.

Farm Sale

Unlike farm shops there is no infrastructure or staff to organise the sale of vegetables. The system is mainly based on trust. The consumer picks up his own vegetables in the warehouse of the farm and leaves the amount of money needed. There is hardly any form of control. The consumer participates by transporting the vegetables himself.

Food Teams

The system of food teams is based on the recovery of the trust between consumer and producer. A food team is a group of people, mostly from the same neighbourhood, who buy fruit, vegetables and dairy products from local farmers nearby. An excellent communication between the consumers and the local farmers is crucial. The system stimulates local farming and participation has been done by organising the exchange of vegetables and other local products.

Vegetable Subscriptions

A vegetable subscription is comparable to the working of a food team. There is also a contract between a consumer and a producer. There is however one big difference, the vegetables in this system are only biological. The consumer buys a package of vegetables every week or every month and picks it up at an exchange point or at the farm.. This last aspect explains why vegetable subscriptions are sometimes combined with CSA. The farmer tries to produce as many vegetables as he can and amplifies with vegetables of other bio farmers where needed.

Adoption of production means

The intention of this system consists of the will of the consumer to adopt a production mean, like a tree or a cow. Adoption in this context means that the consumer pays the producer an amount of money on a yearly basis. Everything produced by this mean, like apples, meat, milk and so on will go directly to the consumer who adopted it.

Participation in the purchase of agricultural land

In this kind of consumer participation, consumers will help farmers financially with the purchase of agricultural land. The financial support is done through an association, an example is Landgenoten. Landgenoten is an association supported by private investors, who invest money so the association can buy agricultural land. There can also be members of an organization itself who will invest in new agricultural land for their farmer, but normally it's been done through another association. When a member invests, financial return such as a discount in the farm shop or on the subscription fee, can be given.

Participation by shares

This system arises when a member or another private investor becomes a shareholder through an investment in the organisation. This often happens with the goal of expanding or a later takeover of the organization."

Source: Analysis of Social Inclusion in Short Chain Initiatives in Ghent. By Jakob Vandevoorde en Babette Ryckaert. Urban Studies, LUCA Gent 2015-2016 (1ste MA Stedebouw). Under the supervision of Els Vervloesem et al.

Key Citations

…everything old is new again. The resurgent interest in local foods and home-scale preservation—from canning, jamming, freezing, brewing, fermenting, and otherwise experimenting with food—is happening coast to coast. Taking up the pot and the pan, the cheesecloth and strainer, the canning jar and the wine bottle, homesteaders are beginning to reweave the web of culture lost in the toxic downdrift of the industrial food supply. Food preservation is hooked into all the values of homesteading—self-sufficiency, community resilience, DIY for fun and pleasure—a reminder that food is not something that’s done for us, but something that we do with one another. Remaking our relationship to food is one of the central homesteading pleasures and practices, a radical act that can go a long way toward growing into our role as producers rather than consumers.

— From “Urban Homesteading: Heirloom Skills for Sustainable Living” by Rachel Kaplan with K. Ruby Blume, Skyhorse Publishing, New York: 2011 [2]

The Commercialization of Food as the Second Fall of Man

"The market, initially just a tool for distributing surpluses, has become the conductor of the whole food system, from farm to fork. The commercialization of farming also leads us to view land, water, nature as private property and the life of the land, our sym­bionts, as commodities. The divide between society, culture, the economy and nature that we currently experience is a divide alien to farming, and can never be sustainable. If the transition from hunting to farming was the First Fall of Man, farming as a business is the Second Fall."

- Gunnar Rundgren [3]

The Industrial Agriculture Model is not working

The "story is not panning out as planned. Chemical fertilizers have depleted soil, herbicides created superweeds, and monocropping is documented to have lower overall yields than diversified farms. And cost effective? The vast majority of farming households earn their living off-farm."

- Beth Hoffman [4]

"Industrial, factory-farmed food is cheap for a simple reason: because it’s over-produced. Organic, sustainable food is under-produced, making it over-priced and fueling the false perception that it “can’t feed the world.” Critics cite this affordability gap and call organic food “elitist.” Reformers retort by citing the health and environmental costs of industrial food. Both have a point. The real solution is to make organic food more affordable – by producing more of it. Organic, sustainable farmers are at a disadvantage competing with a subsidized, high-volume, industrial supply chain. As Jane Black recently said, what we need is a “level playing field.” Technology is the great leveler. It’s time to level the playing field in food."

- Ali Partovi [5]

"The Synthesis Report of the UN ‘Millennium Ecosystem Assessment’ (2005) called agriculture “the largest threat to biodiversity and ecosystem function of any single human activity”. Everything we do is dependent on agriculture and many current agricultural practices are deeply unsustainable. In redesigning the way we ‘do’ agriculture, we can create the basis for the emergence of regenerative cultures everywhere."

- Daniel Christian Wahl [6]

Superiority of Regenerative Organic Agriculture is Scientifically Firmly Established

"The superiority of regenerative farming is now firmly established: organic agriculture outperforms and outearns conventional industrial farming. In September 2011, the Rodale Institute released the findings of its 30-year study of farming systems. Organic techniques beat conventional methods in every category, most importantly in productivity and in profit per acre. Controlling for premium pricing (the Whole Foods effect), organic production brought in three times as much per acre per year. Equally important, organic production produced slightly better yields than standard industrial techniques. Organic farming is also regenerative, rebuilding soils and retaining 15–20 percent more water, in turn improving drought resistance. These regenerative techniques consume 45 percent less energy and emit 29 percent less carbon than conventional methods."

- Paul Doherty [7]

The Insufficient Politics of the Slow Food and Locavore Movements

The Slow Food and locavore movements have been rightly criticized for their class politics, for advancing a laudable goal that is unattainable by many who might choose it if they could, and for consumption excesses that they justify as being local and “slow.” Their essential message, however, that food is an intimate reflection of our lives and culture, is not a class-based assertion but a human one. The appropriate class critique lies in the fact that not everyone can afford a Slow Food meal or the labyrinthine lifestyle of the locavore, but the drive towards localizing our food sources and reimagining our relationship with food can be shared with everyone. Generating local food sources in order to provide food security for everyone is part of the bigger story of the urban food revival currently underway.

— From “Urban Homesteading: Heirloom Skills for Sustainable Living” by Rachel Kaplan with K. Ruby Blume, Skyhorse Publishing, New York: 2011 [8]

Industrial agriculture and its responsibility for climate change

Brian Tokar:

"While climate disruptions are already having profound effects on those who grow our food, agricultural practices on an industrial scale are a primary source of the greenhouse gases responsible for altering the climate. The International Assessment of Agricultural Knowledge, Science and Technology for Development (IAASTD), a collaborative effort by four UN agencies and the World Bank, affirmed in a 2009 report that “The relationship between climate change and agriculture is a two-way street; agriculture contributes to climate change in several major ways and climate change in general adversely affects agriculture.” ... the overwhelming share of the global food system’s impacts on the disruption of the earth’s climate systems stems from the practices of industrial agriculture. Estimates of the food system’s contribution to global emissions of greenhouse gases vary widely, from 20 percent at the low end to nearly 60 percent.... One anomalous but widely reported study suggested that livestock alone may be responsible for 51 percent of global emissions." (

The impact of ultra low-cost entrepreneurial farming equipment

Marc Alt:

"In the developing world, the technology that is perhaps most effectively hacking the food system is the adoption of ultra low-cost entrepreneurial farming equipment. OThese kind of low-cost, low-tech interventions, often sold in peer-to-peer market situations are in fact one of the singularly most powerful ways to combat poverty and global hunger." (

Revolutionary Plots?

Rebecca Solnit:

"We are in an era when gardens are front and center for hopes and dreams of a better world or just a better neighborhood, or the fertile space where the two become one. There are farm advocates and food activists, progressive farmers and gardeners, and maybe most particular to this moment, there’s a lot of urban agriculture. These city projects hope to overcome the alienation of food, of labor, of embodiment, of land, the conflicts between production and consumption, between pleasure and work, the destructiveness of industrial agriculture, the growing problems of global food scarcity, seed loss." (

Learning from Russia's Organic Gardening Revolution

Russians Proving That Small-Scale, Organic Gardening Can Feed the World:

"When it's suggested that our food system be comprised of millions of small, organic gardens, there's almost always someone who says that it isn't realistic. And they'll quip something along the lines of, "There's no way you could feed the world's growing population with just gardens, let alone organically." Really? Has anybody told Russia this?

"On a total of 8 million hectares (20 million acres) of land, 35 million Russian families grow food in small-scale, organic gardens on their Dachas (a secondary home, often in the extra urban areas). Because growing your own food happens to be a long-lived tradition in Russia, even among the wealthy. "Based on official 1999 statistics, 92% of Russia's potatoes, 77% of its vegetables, 87% of its fruits, 59.4% of its meat, and 49.2% of its milk were produced by these 35 million Dacha families (105 million people, 71% of the country's population).

If Russian families can manage such production in their region's very short growing season (approx. 110 days), imagine the output most parts of the world could manage by comparison. Unfortunately in just the US alone, lawns take up more than twice the amount of land Russia's gardens do (est. 40-45 million acres)." (

On the (Non-) Justification of Owning Land

"The power of enclosing land and owning property was brought into the creation by your ancestors by the sword; which first did murder their fellow creatures, men, and after plunder or steal away their land, and left this land successively to you, their children. And therefore, though you did not kill or thieve, yet you hold that cursed thing in your hand by the power of the sword; and so you justify the wicked deeds of your fathers, and that sin of your fathers shall be visited upon the head of you and your children to the third and fourth generation, and longer too, till your bloody and thieving power be rooted out of the land."

- Gerard Winstanley [9]

On the Importance of Permaculture for a Regenerative Society and Economy

"Permaculture is a movement that began when individuals began to learn the same things that I have learned by studying ecosystems. They saw that water, plants, microbial communities and biodiversity, were all inter-related and were part of functioning ecosystems. They also saw that modern agriculture was simply wrong-headed and really was just Neolithic agriculture with tractors and chemicals. They saw that it was possible to collaborate with nature rather than simply mine the soil extracting what they wanted and laying waste to the Earth.

This is the knowledge that must be understood by all people on the Earth as quickly as possible. Once you begin to understand, you cannot go back – just like you can’t believe that the Earth is flat. When you understand that moisture is infiltrated into the ground dependent on the percentages and total amounts of organic material in the soil you, cannot believe that plowing is a good idea. There is a great unhappiness now in human civilization because everyone knows in their heart that overconsumption, waste, and pollution are wrong. Yet the existing society and economy demands that we need more and more growth even if it kills us.

We are experiencing the end of an era. We cannot burn the remaining petroleum in the Earth, we cannot burn the remaining coal. We cannot mass-produce everything to enrich a few and let billions of people starve in poverty or be serfs to serve the wealthy. We need to know that not only all people but all living things have inalienable rights. We need to live more simply. We need to know how to care for the soil, the water, the plants and the animals on the Earth. We need to use our lives to ensure that human civilization will survive. Permaculture is a way for people who understand this to share their knowledge with those who are seeking to learn more."

- John D. Liu [10]

How Cheap Food creates povery and hunger

"Cheap food causes hunger.

On its face, the statement makes no sense. If food is cheaper it's more affordable and more people should be able to get an adequate diet. That is true for people who buy food, such as those living in cities. But it is quite obviously not true if you're the one growing the food. You're getting less for your crops, less for your work, less for your family to live on. That is as true for Vermont dairy farmers as it is for rice farmers in the Philippines. Dairy farmers today are getting prices for their milk that are well below their costs of production. They are putting less food on their own tables. And they are going out of business at an alarming rate. When the economic dust settles, this will leave us with fewer family farmers producing the dairy products most of us depend on.

This is the central contradiction of cheap food. Low agricultural prices cause hunger in the short term among farmers. And they cause food insecurity in the long term because they reduce both the number of farmers and the money they have to invest in producing more food.

An estimated 70% of the world's poor live in rural areas and depend either directly or indirectly on agriculture. Cheap food has made them hungry and kept them in poverty. It has also starved the countryside in the developing world of much-needed agricultural investment. Farmers have nothing to invest if they are losing money on their crops."

- Timothy Wise [11]

Key Concepts

  1. Community Supported Agriculture
  2. Food Sovereignty
  3. Land Commons
  4. Land Sovereignty

Visual conceptualisation

The Food Dimensions of the 'Doughnut':

Key Facts

See also: The Myth of a Food Crisis. By Jonathan Latham.


The amount of arable land per person decreased from about an acre in 1970 to roughly half an acre in 2000 and is projected to decline to about a third of an acre by 2050....

- John Robb [12]

"According to the International Food Policy Research Institute, 10 million ha of land lost by erosion, by year. Each year, anywhere in the world, growth of cities and slums, the intensification of transport networks, etc., removed from agriculture hundreds of thousands of hectares of very fertile area. The area of farmland per person has declined by nearly half since 1960." [13]

“The world's food system is beginning to strain under a global population expected to reach nine billion by 2050, by which time the planet's arable land is projected to be half of what it was in the 1970s. And as climate change threatens long-term food security, agriculture will need to produce 70 percent more food to feed an increasingly crowded world. Today's agricultural systems are not as efficient or sustainable as they should or could be: Agriculture uses 80 percent of freshwater and produces approximately 24 percent of the world's greenhouse gas emissions; pesticide use causes runoff that pollutes rivers, lakes and oceans. Moreover, the average item of food travels approximately 1,500 miles before it reaches our plates, resulting in wasted food and more greenhouse gas emissions.

- Renee Cho [14]

"Declining agricultural prices are a broad trend continuing, with the odd blip, for over a century, and applying to every commodity. This downward trend has continued even through a recent biofuel boom designed to consume some of these surpluses (de Gorter et al., 2015). In other words, the available data contradict the likelihood of food shortages. Despite the rising global population, food gluts are everywhere."

- Darrin Qualmann [15]


"The latest permaculture methods can deliver much more than just double or triple the yield of conventional farming. I recently came across this article by David Blume chronicling his nine-year permaculture enterprise in California. Running a CSA for 300-450 people on two acres of land, he achieved yields eight times what the Department of Agriculture says is possible per square foot."

- Charles Eisenstein [16]


According to the 30-year ongoing comparative Farming Systems Trial at the Rodale Institute [17]:

  • Organic yields match conventional yields.
  • Organic outperforms conventional in years of drought.
  • Organic farming systems build rather than deplete soil organic matter, making it a more sustainable system.
  • Organic farming uses 45% less energy and is more efficient.
  • Conventional systems produce 40% more greenhouse gases.
  • Organic farming systems are more profitable than conventional.


"It is estimated that at least 66% of the total population of sub-Saharan Africa, or 552 million people, live in rural areas, and this will rise to 650 million people by 2025. If it is assumed that 90% are customary rather than statutory land holders, then currently there are some 500 million people in the customary sector in sub-Saharan Africa. With exceptions, most of these people have been affected by negative legal and policy treatment of customary land rights, especially as it relates to common resources. As a common resource, the fate of the commons is a concern of the majority" (

Present and future


" On a total of about 20 million acres managed by over 35 million Russian families, Russians are carrying on an old-world technique, which we Americans might learn from. They are growing their own organic crops - and it’s working.

According to some statistics [18], they grow 92% of the entire countries’ potatoes, 77% of its vegetables, 87% of its fruit, and feed 71% of the entire population from privately owned, organic farms or house gardens all across the country. These aren’t huge Agro-farms run by pharmaceutical companies; these are small family farms and less-than-an-acre gardens.

A recent report from Agro-ecology and the Right to Food [19] says that organic and sustainable small-scale farming could double food production in the parts of the world where hunger is the biggest issue. Within five to 10 years we could see a big jump in crop cultivation." (


"The UN estimates that 800 million people are engaged in urban agriculture in the form of friend gardens, family gardens, community gardens, corporate gardens worth 15-20% of the world production of food." see note 17


"The United Nations estimates that animal agriculture accounts for more than 14% of global emissions. A seminal 2018 report, which this new analysis builds on, found that the world’s top 35 beef and dairy producers alone account for 15% of all those emissions." [20]


"Methane is a short-term greenhouse gas—it doesn’t stay in the atmosphere as long as carbon dioxide—but it is substantially more potent and can cause more damage while it’s in there. Research published last year found that global annual methane emissions increased 9% from 2000 to 2017—the equivalent of doubling the total carbon dioxide emissions of Germany or France—largely as a result of agriculture." [21]

Statistical Studies

Yes, organic farming can feed the world, it's the only model that can do so while maintaining and increasing the quality of the soil!!

population, without increasing the agricultural land base."

  • University of Minnesota (2013, August 1). Existing cropland could feed four billion more by dropping biofuels and animal feed. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 8, 2013, from /releases/2013/08/130801125704.htm
  • "A 10-year project by the UK Centre for Ecology and Hydrology revealed that nature-friendly farming methods boost biodiversity without reducing average yields." [22] ; report

See also:

"Globally, between two and three billion people acquire and uphold rights through these regimes. Over half the world’s land mass is subject to such norms. Formal recognition has soared in recent decades, but still covering only one fifth of community lands [23]. These operate in all regions. One million villages in China and another one million in India govern both farms and common properties. Vast tracts of Latin America have been transferred to communities, most to those who define themselves as Indigenous Peoples. Seventy four per cent of the landmass of Australia, 40 per cent of Canada, significant proportions of forests in Eastern Europe, Sweden, Italy and Switzerland are also legally community property. Cast your eye over national level data at to see multiple other examples." (

  • "In February, the World Economic Forum warned that “the food system is currently in the red; it is extracting more than can be sustained and we are pushing nature to the brink.” In August, the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released an extensive report forecasting land degradation and associated food insecurity in the decades ahead. Its headlines for policymakers were grim: As one of the report’s authors summarized, “Food security will be increasingly affected by future climate change through yield declines—especially in the tropics—increased prices, reduced nutrient quality, and supply chain disruptions.”

( )

  1. Average organic yields equivalent to conventional agriculture, and 30% higher in drought years (30-year study);
  2. Total outputs in diversified grassland systems 15%-79% higher than in monocultures;
  3. 2-4x higher resource efficiency on small-scale agroecological farms;
  4. 30% more species and 50% higher abundance of biodiversity on organic farms;
  5. Around 50% more beneficial omega-3 fatty acids in organic meat and milk.

Agriculture and Ecology

Damian Carrington, “Humanity has wiped out 60% of animal populations since 1970, report finds,” The Guardian, October 30, 2018, .

“Measuring the Daily Destruction of the World's Rainforests,” Scientific American, November 19, 2019, .

Jonathan Watts, “Third of Earth's soil is acutely degraded due to agriculture,” The Guardian, September 12, 2017, .

Ward Anseeuw and Giulia Maria Baldinelli, Uneven Ground: Land Inequality at the Heart of Unequal Societies (Rome: International Land Coalition, 2020), .

Lauren Kubiac, “Marine Biodiversity in Dangerous Decline, Finds New Report,” NRDC Expert Blog, May 6, 2019, .

David Kroodsma et al., “Tracking the global footprint of fisheries,” Science 359, no. 6378 (2018): 904-908, .


The directory distinguishes between:

  1. Food Hubs & Networks?
  2. Food Production / Gardening / Urban Agriculture
  3. Farm management
  4. Open Agriculture / Food Data
  5. Hardware and Tools
  6. P2P Farming Knowledge

See also:

Key Articles and Essays

See also:

  1. Nevin Cohen: The Networked Future of Urban Agriculture. Special issue: Hacking_the_Food_System, from Food/Connect.
  2. Robert Paterson on the Emergence of Four Major Techno-Economic Paradigms: on the key role of food surplus as lever in the evolution of human civilisation [24]
  3. Jan Douwe van de Ploeg: Reconstitution of the Peasantry in the 21st Century
  4. Report: Agroecology and the Right to Food : A move by farmers in developing countries to ecological agriculture, away from chemical fertilisers and pesticides, could double food production within a decade [25] [26]
  5. Barriers to Agri-ecological conversion: overview of the problems regarding this necessary switch
  6. Report: Sustainable Agriculture and Off-Grid Renewable Energy. Dr. Mae-Wan Ho. ISIS contribution to UNCTAD Trade and Environment Review 2011 [27]
  7. Jason F. Mclennan. The Urban Agriculture Revolution. Bringing Food into Living Cities. [28]: An important and sensible overview of why this is happening.
  8. Toward Global Knowledge Sharing for Farmers: Examples from the Philippines. By Roberto Verzola. [29]
  • Vivero Pol, Jose Luis, Food as a Commons: Reframing the Narrative of the Food System (April 23, 2013).


Policy proposals:


  1. Five innovations for urban gardening
  2. Ensuring Land Access, by Rob Hopskins.
  3. How To Share Land; focuses on UK/US
  4. How to Share a Vegetable Garden [31]
  5. How to Start A Farmers' Market [32]
  6. Host a Baby Food Swap [33]
  7. How to Create Your Own Seed-Lending Library [34]
  8. How to start a Crop Mob - Crop mobs allow you to get and give gardening help. [35]

Key Blogs

  1. Permatechie: a blog about the intersection of ecovillages and hackspaces, ecology and technology, primitivism and transhumanism, permaculture and appropriate technology.

Key Books

  1. Dirt: The Erosion of Civilizations. by David R. Montgomery. University of California Press, 2007; watch the video: Dave Montgomery on Soil Degradation and the Erosion of Civilizations
  2. The Ecological Revolution – Making Peace with the Planet. John Bellamy Foster, Monthly Review Press, New York, 2009, 288 pp [37]
  3. Food Rebellions! Crisis and the Hunger for Justice. Eric Holt-Giménez and Raj Patel, Pambazuka Press, Cape Town, Dakar, Nairobi and Oxford, 2009 [38]; Follow-up: Food Movements Unite! Ed. by Eric Holt-Giménez and Annie Shattuck. Food First, 2011. [39]
  4. Terra Madre: Forging a New Global Network of Sustainable Food Communities. Carlo Petrini. Chelsea Green Publishing, 2010. [40]
  5. Reclaiming Public Water. Achievements, Struggles and Visions from Around the World. By Brid Brennan, et al. download: The groundbreaking book on how reformed public water services can achieve the goal of delivering water for all.
  6. Radical Gardening. George McKay. France Lincoln, 2010
  7. Robert Albritton, Let Them Eat Junk: How Capitalism Creates Hunger and Obesity, New York: Pluto, 2009. The world food crisis involves global patterns of malnutrition -- 25% of the world is obese or overweight; 25% is starving.
  8. First the Seed: The Political Economy of Plant Biotechnology, 1492-2000. Jack Kloppenburg.
  9. Aoki, K., 2008. Seed Wars: Controversies and Cases on Plant Genetic Resources and Intellectual Property. Durham, NC: Carolina Academic Press.
  10. Owning the Earth. Transforming history of land ownership. By Andro Linklater. 2013

Policy guide:

  • The Future Control of Food. A Guide to International Negotiations and Rules on Intellectual Property, Biodiversity and Food Security. Edited By Geoff Tansey and Tasmin Rajotte. IDRC, 2010 [41] : “This book is the first wide-ranging guide to the key issues of intellectual property and ownership, genetics, biodiversity and food security."

Political Economy of Agriculture and food production:

  • Settlers: Mythology of the White Proletariat (J. Sakai)

Essential classic of Third Worldist theory. "a revolutionary work in every sense of the word."



  • A History of World Agriculture (Mazoyer and Roudart) : "Awesome ... history of agriculture. The history of agriculture is really foundational for economic history altogether. Fascinating book."
  • Neanderthals, Bandits and Farmers: How Agriculture Really Began: "a book on prehistoric agriculture and anthropology by the British science writer Colin Tudge."
  • Against the Grain. James C. Scott. The link between growing cereals, and their measurability, and the formation of the first state forms in Mesopotamia.

Key Examples and Case Studies

Key Movements and Projects

See also:

  1. Campesino a Campesino
  2. Slow Food
  3. Terra Madre Network

Preferred projects:

  • The Nutrient Dense Project [42]: voluntary network of farmers, gardeners, orchardists, ranchers, agronomists, writers and researchers is working hard to re-write the rules for the way in which we understand food, the production thereof, and its consumption, all based on sound scientifically credible data that they gather and pay for themselves. The idea is being able to conclusively demonstrate (read: numbers) that soil health = plant health = nutrition."
  • FarmHack: a network for sharing open source know-how amongst DIY agricultural tech innovators
  • in France

Key Policy Documents

  1. Six Key Policy Principles for Scaling Up Sustainable Agriculture
  2. Five Principles of the New Agro-Ecological Paradigm‎‎

* The P2P Foundation supports Farm Hack's proposed Free Farm Manifesto !

  • And also:
  1. Measures for Relocalization and Reruralization, 2 times four essential policy principles, as proposed by Mariarosa Dalla Costa
  2. From Depletion to Regenerative Agriculture. Open Market Sustainability policy proposals by Patrick Doherty. [44]
  3. Policy propositions for sustaining food & farming systems, for Victoria, Australia
  4. Six Proposed Policy Principles for Scaling Up Agroecology. By Olivier De Schutter, Gaëtan Vanloqueren
  5. Grain: Five key steps towards a food system that can address climate change and the food crisis
  6. Essential Food Policy Proposals. By MARK BITTMAN
  7. The Sky Charter: the Global Commons of the atmosphere, our shared sky, is a critical context for an enduring and comprehensive solution to global warming.
  8. Introduction: Energy from the Perspective of the Commons ; Jeff Vail’s Call for a Scale-Free Energy Policy
  9. George Papanikolaou – Peer to Peer Energy Production and the Social Conflicts in the Era of Green Development; with Vasilis Kostakis, see the P2P Energy Manifesto
  10. Cap & Share: simple is beautiful

Proposal for a Food Commons Policy, by Jose Luis Vivero Pol

Key Research Projects and Institutions

Key Tools

Key Webcasts

  • Dirt!: excellent documentary
  • Documentary: The Promise of the Commons. By JOHN D. LIU & PATRICK AUGENSTEIN. [45]: "questions the orthodox opinion that only private ownership can protect the ecosystems. It discusses the thoughts and rights of people around the world and shows how landless people are protecting the common heritage." [46]

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