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Re: Forests and trees provide benefits for food security and nutrition– what is your say?

Champak Ishram community based organization, India
05.02.2013
Champak  Ishram

Hi Eva and Fred

You asked us to contribute our knowledge on this issue through this forum and you use the information in your paper and participate in the conference.  Is it your moral ethic? People of international agencies use name of poor people and tribal communities of developing countries to justify their activities particularly in forestry field. But the people get the most benefit of the activities themselves and make the poor people and tribal communities even ruined or marginalized.

What are the key challenges and bottlenecks hindering a greater contribution of forests, trees on farms and agroforestry systems to food security?

Yes the forests are main sources of food security of tribal communities who historical sacrifice their wellbeing for the forest resource conservation. The tribal communities did not destroyed forests in their communities as much it did by western and other societies for farming. They used small forest area used only a small land area to cultivate crops, despite the production was insufficient to feed their families. They used non-timber products and sustained their living. That is the fact to have a higher proportion of biodiversity rich forest areas around the tribal community areas. But other societies did not recognized the contribution in environmental conservation and importance of forest for their food security. Most traditionally used forestlands were managed in common which are registered as public forests now The areas are now excessively controlled by state authorities. The territories of the indigenous people are encroached by government policies and activities of other societies; and the communities are squeezed in marginal lands, and forced them to grow crop in sensitive lands and shorter rotation. The forest based people are blamed for encroaching on environmentally sensitive land and using forest resources but the fact of the resource uses are ignored. The forest management policies and activities of international agencies have never given attention of problems of tribal communities.  They have advised governments of developing countries to meet the interest of and benefit western and non-tribal ethnic groups, and frozen the opportunities of forest land use practices of tribal communities. They have taken advantages of gullible natural behavior of our communities. Even in the concept note of this paper you have not considered the way of lives and forest policy issues of our communities. Therefore the main enemy or problem of tribal communities for forest based food security is international agencies and policies. 

What are some concrete examples of innovative approaches, or good practices that increase the contributions of forests and trees to food security and nutrition goals?

Innovative approach of forest based food security is management of forest for multipurpose uses. 

What is needed for food security policies and strategies to recognize the contributions and value that forests and trees bring?

It needed to stop policies and practices of international agencies that ruin tribal groups and poor people. 

In summary the people including you who work in international organizations are the main hindrance for forest based food security of tribal communities and poor people.

Chapak Ishram

Manipur, India