Fight against tobacco ban
African tobacco farmers concluded a two-day International Tobacco Growers Association Africa Regional Meeting on May 30 with a declaration of opposition to the proposals that threaten the region’s jobs and local economies.
The FCTC recommends, among other things, that governments phase out tobacco farming by limiting the land where it can be grown and endorsing the dismantling of all bodies connecting governments with growers-such as the tobacco boards.
This would put farmers’ livelihoods at risk while failing to offer an economically viable alternative crop.
Antonio Abrunhosa, chief executive officer of the InternationalTobacco Growers Association, who addressed the regional meeting, said: ‘‘There’s now a unified voice throughout Southern and East Africa that’s determined to protect the land, the jobs, and the communities sustained by tobacco farming.”
The ITGA represents more than 30 million tobacco farmers around the world.
African tobacco farmers support millions of people throughout the region and their crops are a vital source of foreign revenue for many of these countries.
In Malawi, seven out of 10 workers are either directly or indirectly employed by the sector and tobacco represents 70 percent of its foreign exchange earnings and 15 percent of total GDP.
Francois van der Merwe, chairman of ITGA Africa Region, said the unified voice of these farmers affirms the defence of their right to grow tobacco and the crucial role it plays in the region’s economy.
“These farmers are prepared to stand up to this 21st century imperialism from a body comprising mainly health officials who are out of touch with the farming sector and who are putting our economy at risk,” he said.
Jorge Nestor, the Argentinean President of ITGA, reaffirmed its unshakeable support of tobacco growers from all over the world.
The ITGA is a non-profit organisation that works to advance the cause of millions of tobacco farmers to the world.It strives to provide a strong collective voice on an international and national scale in order to ensure the long-term security of tobacco farming communities.
»Fight against tobacco ban
- WHO Tobacco Proposal – Threatened farmers slam ‘outreagous recommendations’ (mpoverello.com)
- Tobacco Farming: Trouble in Zimbabwe (ecopitt.wordpress.com)
- End of quota ups tobacco farm productivity (futurity.org)
- Alere Wellbeing to Help Record Number of Tobacco Users on May 31. Alere Wellbeing, American Cancer Society Join the World Health Organization to Fight Back Against Big Tobacco on World No Tobacco Day (prweb.com)
- How much tobacco was grown in 1700s (zackerycarringt.typepad.com)
- Touring and Painting a Cuban Tobacco Farm (maureenoward.com)
- Put it in your pipe and grow it: Former tobacco farms evolve (grist.org)
- African Farmers’ Livelihoods at Risk (appablog.wordpress.com)
- African Farmers United in Opposition to Proposals Threatening Jobs, Economies (appablog.wordpress.com)