Photographs and text by Evergreen State College, United States, whose students visited Venezuela as part of their college course “Venezuela: Building Economic and Social Justice” earlier this year.
In our time spent in Venezuela we were able to see that much of the hype about there being a lack of food security is extremely exaggerated, and in fact the problem is not security, it is a lack of food sovereignty. While at one point Venezuela was producing much of it’s own food, since the discovery of oil in the country in the early 1900s, it makes up a negligible part of the GDP that is only beginning to increase since Chavez has taken power. This has been done through huge attempts to reform land redistribution and give it to people willing to make it productive, as well as Misiones such as AgroVenezuela, the help of Cuban Agronomists and Agroecologists, and the push to form farming cooperatives. There are also several government started projects to build urban gardens, have mobile and permanent Areperias through PDVAL ,and have created government owned Mercals with subsidized food. Here are some pictures of projects we saw.