News from CAFOD

As the official aid agency of the Catholic Church in England and Wales, CAFOD is reaching out to people living in poverty with practical help. But CAFOD’s mission also calls on us to challenge the structures that bring about poverty and injustice in the first place.

“…what peasants, fisherman and farmers conserve in memory handed down through the generations and which is now derided and forgotten by a model of production that is entirely to the advantage of a limited group and a tiny portion of the world population. Let us remember that it is a model which, despite all its science, allows around eight hundred million people to continue to go hungry…”

Pope Francis (Message on World Food Day)

For generations, small-scale farmers have freely shared a wide variety of seeds to produce the food that feeds a significant proportion of the world’s population. However, laws are being introduced across the world which limit what they can do with their own seed varieties.

As a result of these laws, small-scale farmers are facing increasing pressure to buy seeds from the limited selection produced by big corporations. But this is not good for people or the planet.

This summer, CAFOD is inviting parishes across the Archdiocese of Birmingham to stand in solidarity with small-scale farmers to ensure that they have free access to their own varieties of seeds.

Salina, a seed saver from Bangladesh says “…The companies do not give good seeds. They put descriptions on their seed packets that are not true. It is very impractical information. And the main thing is, the seeds sold by the companies do not belong to the farmers. Farmers can grow the crops, but they cannot keep the seeds in their own hands. This is a very bad thing…”

Salina has written a letter to the World Bank - an institution with a lot of influence in food policies - calling for the protection of the rights of small-scale farmers like herself to use their own varieties of seeds.

Your parish has an opportunity to support Salina by adding your names to her letter. Find more about how your parish can support Salina

Our faith-filled actions are also like seeds, bearing fruits of change in our world.

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