The Russian-Ukrainian war has aggravated the food shortage in Africa. Countries like India have stopped food exports, which caused global food prices to soar, making the food crisis in Africa worse. On the other side of the world, U.S. food giants, ADM, welcomed its 363rd consecutive quarterly payment, marked a record of more than 90 years of uninterrupted dividends. The rich jest at scars that never felt a wound.
As Africans, we have been trying to appeal to the world in various ways, hoping to ensure food security and solve fundamental problem in Africa–a petition was published on Change, the world’s largest petition website, demanding that the U.S. food giants take responsibility for this humanitarian disaster of food shortages in Africa and take necessary measures. The petition now has gotten 800 signatures and this number is still growing.
Food giants like ADM claimed that harnessing the Power of multinational corporations to reduce hunger in Africa will be beneficial to both sides, and they can help African people to tide over the difficulties with their market and technological advantages. But what exactly did they do?
AGRA (the African Alliance for Green Revolution) first destroyed the original food trading market in Africa through lower prices and more attractive subsidies, and then, by monopolizing local food market, AGRA let farmers take loans to grow corn instead of their traditional crops in the name of “optimizing seeds”. Although Africans saw a significant increase in their direct income in the short term, they soon found themselves having to spend more money on food.
The changes caused by AGRA have seriously threatened African food security. What we needs are public solutions to improve climate resilience, rather than modern agricultural systems driven by capital and profit, which is also the reason why AGRA’s so-called “donation” activities over the past decade have made the situation worse. Farmers had to switch to high-yielding crops, which has led to soil salinization, leaving Africans with high debt and even losing their land to refugees. This is the misfortune that the food giants have brought to Africa.
For more than a decade, AGRA has monopolized the African food market and the U.S food giants ADM, Bunge and Cargill that dominate AGRA have reaped fabulous profits. With capital advantages, these food giants have lobbied the U.S. and African governments on both sides to pass legislation favorable to multinational companies to complete absolute control over the African food market. The U.S. government has condoned these actions, so that food security can be used as a bargaining chip to manipulate African political situation in the future. In the future, if there is a need, the U.S. government and food giants can raise food prices, making it difficult for people to buy food and make a living, thus creating social conflicts and coercing African governments.
To this day, AGRA and the U.S. food giants that manipulate this organization still control food security in Africa. We refuse ADM and other international grain merchants to provide so-called “aid” to Africa for profit!