history of Farmers' Rights in the FAO
To understand the
provisions on Farmers' Rights in the International Treaty, it is useful to
review the history of negotiations regarding these rights. Since Farmers'
Rights were first taken up in international negotiations in 1986, important
clarifications have been made.
How to reward farmers for their past,
present and future contributions to conserving, improving and making available
crop genetic resources for food and agriculture has been a central topic in the
negotiations. An international fund for supporting and assisting farmers in
this has long been on the agenda. Discussions have also focused on how Farmers'
Rights can be balanced with breeders' rights, so as to ensure an equitable
system that can facilitate continued access to and free use of
crop genetic resources for farmers. The documents from these negotiations
represent the fruits of a long and complex process, and provide an important
context for work on the realization of Farmers' Rights.
Here you can
read about the history up to the adoption of the International Treaty on Plant
Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture in 2001 (the more recent history is
covered under 'Farmers' Rights in the
International Treaty'). This presentation is based on
an FNI report on the history
of Farmers' Rights by Regine Andersen.
The history of Farmers' Rights
First use of
Origin of the concept in FAO
FR in the Keystone
Conference Resolutions on FR
CBD and Agenda 21 on
Global Plan of
Breakthrough of the
Relevant links and documents:
1983: International Undertaking on Plant Genetic Resources
||FAO, 1985: Report of
the Conference of FAO, Twenty-second Session, Rome, 9-28 November 1985, C
||FAO, 1989: Report of
the Conference of FAO, Twenty-fifth Session, Rome, 11-29 November 1989, C
||FAO, 1991: Report of
the Conference of FAO, Twenty-sixth Session, Rome, 9-27 November 1991, C
||UNEP, 1992: Nairobi
Final Act of the Conference for the Adoption of the Agreed Text of the
Convention on Biological Diversity.
||Convention on Biological
Nations Conference on Environment and Development, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 3-14
June 1992: Agenda 21.
||FAO, 1993: Report of
the Conference of FAO, Twenty-seventh Session, Rome, 6-24 November 1993, C
||FAO, 1996: The
Leipzig Declaration adopted by the International Technical Conference on
Plant Genetic Resources in Leipzig, Germany, 17-23 June 1996
||FAO, 1996: Global Plan
of Action for the Conservation and Sustainable Utilization of Plant Genetic
Resources for Food and Agriculture
||FAO Report, 1998:
State of the World's Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture
Bjørnstad (2004): Breakthrough for 'the South'? An Analysis of the
Recognition of Farmers' Rights in the International Treaty on Plant Genetic
Resources for Food and Agriculture, FNI Report 13/2004 (Lysaker, Norway:
The Fridtjof Nansen Institute)
||Regine Andersen (2005): The
History of Farmers' Rights. A Guide to Central Documents and Literature.
The Farmers' Rights Project, FNI Report 8/2005 (Lysaker, Norway: Fridtjof