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Colombian government and peasant producers are going through a historic national dialogue. Tangible results of this process has been the composition of the National Agrarian Pact and a step forward towards a National Rural Development Plan, which includes family farming as the backbone the agrarian public policy. Estimates find that there are at least 700,000 small family farms in Colombia, of which the vast majority are subsistence, (Maletta Hector, 2011). More effort needs to be done in order to engage the most vulnerable family farmers in effective and equal sustainable development. It requires a significant effort to make the most vulnerable farming families to engage fairly and with effective opportunities in a process of sustainable development.



In Colombia, family farms are mostly located in areas rich in natural resources and biodiversity. Under this condition, a strategy can promote this type of agriculture taking into consideration sustainable production intensification criteria with a territorial approach aimed at reducing the provision of individual grants and increasing the generation of public goods that go beyond agriculture. This strategy will address problems in rural areas and cover indigenous communities, fishermen and artisanal miners.

From a political and institutional perspective, Colombia is a country that needs a specific definition of family farming and an operative characterization of its typology with the purpose of defining differentiated instruments custom tailored at this group. However, there are certain government programs that conceive family farming as an appropriate heterogeneous and strategic actor in achieving peace. These programs generate actions that promote this type of agriculture, enhancing its potential and accomplishing food security and sustainable rural development.

Our strategic and protected areas provide ecosystem and environmental services. Yet they have been shortened and confined by the war and are at high risks of being intervened if the peace treaty is signed. Therefore, projects and integrated interventions in rural areas are required to minimize risks and prevent inappropriate exploitation, preventing its destruction and allowing their preservation, combined with development activities in peace.

Another model of rural regional development must be identified, one that is based on family farming utilizing the productive and strategic opportunities offered by territories (its human and natural resources) and its potential markets (local, national, international), enabling rural communities to evolve from the current conditions of marginalization and poverty to welfare and progress.

The process of building peace in Colombia will require the efforts of several generations. It should begin as soon as possible with clear goals and procedures using when necessary best practices and experiences from the rest of the world as well as an extensive and methodical dialogue with the people about their attitudes and expectations regarding the peace process.



Family farming lex

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Revista Colombiana Ciencias Hortícolas

Research center
La Revista Colombiana de Ciencias Hortícolas es el órgano de divulgación de la Sociedad Colombiana de Ciencias Hortícolas-SCCH (adscrita a la ISHS - International Society for Horticultural Science); la Facultad de Ciencias Agropecuarias de la Universidad Pedagógica y Tecnológica de Colombia-UPTC y la Facultad de Ciencias Agrarias y del Medio...