Alliances parlementaires

Engaging with the Latin American and Caribbean Parliament to legislate on agroecology

18/10/2023 - 

FAO is engaging with Member states of the Latin American and Caribbean Parliament (PARLATINO) as they look to design a regional model law on Agroecology. FAO already has a basis for this work, as a legal study it conducted with the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID) within the Scaling up Agroecology Initiative in 2021, offers guidelines for the design of such a model law.

In 2022, PARLATINO formally requested FAO’s technical support to draft the model law. Since then, FAO has organized three public consultations with the Caribbean, Mesoamerica and South America to collect inputs from parliamentarians working on agroecology in national and regional bodies, civil society organizations, social movements and international organizations in each subregion. This process was designed to be inclusive and participatory; systematic in collecting information and inputs and an opportunity to draft possible content for the Model Law.

On 12 October 2023, FAO met the PARLATINO Commission of Agriculture, Livestock, and Fisheries to share the results of this collaboration and to highlight key legal challenges to agroecological approaches in agrifood systems as well as provide recommendations for the development of the new model law. Guilherme Brady, Head of the FAO Family Farming and Parliamentary Networks Unit, reaffirmed that this initiative not only aligns with the achievement of the Global Parliamentary Pact against Hunger and Malnutrition, but also supports and gives great impetus to the implementation of the United Nations Decade of Family Farming 2019-2028 in the region.

The Global Parliamentary Pact against Hunger and Malnutrition (June 2023) constitutes a political declaration aimed at promoting parliamentary action towards the progressive realization of the right to adequate food, the transformation of agrifood systems and the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), supporting the transformation of agrifood systems to be sustainable, inclusive, equitable and resilient, leaving no one behind.

Luis Lobo, Technical Officer of the Spain-FAO Alliance for Latin American and the Caribbean, highlighted that “PARLATINO’s model laws have been characterized as being vanguard norms for opening new spaces and contributing to the processes of standardization and legislative promotion in the region”, while Manuela Cuvi, Legal Officer of the Development Law Branch of FAO (LEGN), concluded by saying that “…during the Public Consultations, the importance of political and institutional recognition of agroecology approaches was stressed, especially in Latin America and the Caribbean, the main region that has promoted agroecological transitions in agrifood systems.”

Agroecology represents an overarching and comprehensive systems framework to guide public policies towards sustainable agriculture and food systems. It enhances public efficiency by fostering integrated and inter-ministerial policy design and implementation, bringing together agricultural and food sectors that are often disaggregated.

Legal frameworks are important to guarantee agroecological approaches in the transformation of agrifood systems, and FAO has highlighted the opportunity for this model law to spearhead regional change.


Since 2009, PARLATINO has been part of the Parliamentary Front against Hunger in Latin America and the Caribbean. It is a regional, permanent and unicameral organism, consisting of the national parliaments of Latin America – Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Dominican Republic, Cuba, Aruba, Curacao, St Martin, Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Peru, Suriname, Uruguay and Venezuela.

PARLATINO aims at promoting the economic and social development of the Latin American community, the full economic, political, social and cultural development of its people and ensuring strict respect for human rights. The development and adoption of framework legislation represents one of the instruments for regional integration in different fields.

With FAO’s support, PARLATINO has developed a series of framework laws which serve as references for the development of national legislation, including:

  • Model Law for the strengthening of Agri-Food Cooperatives in Latin America and the Caribbean (2023)
  • Model Law for the prevention and reduction of food losses and waste (2022)
  • Model Law on Climate Change and Food and Nutrition Security (2021)
  • Model Law on Community Water and Sanitation Systems (2021)
  • Model Law on Artisanal or Small-Scale Fishing (2017)
  • Family Agriculture Model Law (2016)
  • Framework Law on School Feeding (2013)
  • Framework Law on the Right to Food and Food Sovereignty (2012)