On August 11, through a Resolution of the Official Gazette, the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Livestock defined its new organization chart and made official the creation of the National Directorate of Agroecology, which will be chaired by the agronomist Eduardo Cerdá who is the president of the National Network of Municipalities and Communities that Promote Agroecology (Renama). This direction will act under the orbit of the Secretariat of Food, Bioeconomy and Regional Development.

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The main objective of the directorate will be “to intervene in the design and implementation of policies, programs and projects that promote intensive and extensive primary production based on agroecology at all its scales, coordinating with producers, agrarian organizations and municipal and provincial governments.” To comply with this, it is expected, among other actions, the creation of a Strategic Plan of Productive Transition that contains the objectives, methodology and recipients for the agro-ecological implementation; and the granting of technical, credit and tax assistance to promote said activity.

This government decision is historic for our country, and is framed within the growing environmental crisis and the need to establish consistent public policies, such as the design of alternatives to the agricultural production model that prevails today. It is a decision that recognizes the approach that various farmer organizations have been developing for years, who have created alternatives to confront the hegemonic system. In addition, the current Minister of the Environment, Juan Cabandié, has repeatedly pointed out the risk that the use of pesticides and phytosanitary products entails in the health of the population and the environment, classifying them as “poisons”.

In this sense, agroecology proposes another way of producing food, which in the words of Eduardo Cerdá “implies taking into account and putting into play all ecological processes when producing agriculture and livestock. It is not a business look, it is a system look, to understand the natural processes that work in a field. By taking into account all the processes, it is easier to take care of them ”.

For these reasons, we welcome the implementation of this direction at the national level, since it represents a change of vision in the way of producing food in our country and implies an advance in the much-promised food sovereignty. We believe that this measure provides the appropriate initial impulse to give place and space to this production alternative based on sustainability and caring for the health of people and the environment. In this way, it is possible to incorporate a social and environmental perspective to the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries, which is extremely necessary in these times.

Authors

Maria Laura Carrizo Morales 

Ananda Maria Lavayén

Contact

Juan Bautista Lopez, juanbautistalopez@fundeps.org