On 9-10 December 2017, Focus on the Global South participated in events organized by the Agroecology Learning Alliance in South East Asia (ALiSEA) in Luang Prabang, Laos, which included a festival of short films on agroecology, an agroecology market, and a public discussion.

The main objectives of the events were to raise awareness among policy makers and the public about the importance of supporting alternative farming practices and support local agroecological initiatives.

The panel discussion focused on the issue, “We Are What We Eat,” which was articulated around key questions, including:

·        Where is our food coming from?

·        What are the impacts of current main farming systems/agriculture production models?

·        What are the alternatives to the current conventional farming systems (pathways towards healthier and fairer farming/food systems)?

·        How do we encourage the youth to keep farming, in a way that makes them proud of what they do and that help create healthy food systems?

Our Executive Director, Shalmali Guttal, made a presentation on the situation of smallholders in the Mekong region, the importance of local food systems, alternatives to conventional agriculture, and pathways to healthier, fairer food systems.

A video of the panel discussion is now up on the ALiSEA YouTube channel, here. Shalmali’s presentation starts around the 12:30 mark.