One year after the creation of the State Program for the Acquisition of Food from Family Farming (PEAAF) by the Government of Pernambuco, small rural producers and popular movements are still awaiting its regulation and the allocation of resources. On the 18th, there was a virtual meeting between civil society organizations, parliamentarians, public managers and representatives of the State Government to find an answer.
“We held a meeting on April 14th. This meeting resulted in a document that was formalized with the State Government, the Legislative Assembly, the Civil House and related secretariats on the agenda, with a set of demands and proposals from civil society, including the execution of the PEAAF, the regulation and the allocation for the program and we have not had any feedback from the Government on these demands”, says Alexandre Henrique Pires, coordinator of the Articulação do Semiárido Brasileiro (ASA Brasil).
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As a follow-up to the meeting, a public hearing will be scheduled with the government and some members of the Legislative Assembly of Pernambuco (Alepe) to debate the implementation of the PEAAF and other demands from civil society on family farming and agroecology.
State Law No. 16,888, enacted in June 2020, with the objective of valuing family farming, which represents 70% of agricultural production in the state, according to data from the Agronomic Institute of Pernambuco (IPA), was an achievement in the struggle of popular movements and peasants.
“So, how does a family farm like this, has a contingent like this, a weight like that, a strength like this, both organizational – that we have several organizations in the countryside that organize farmers and the state does not have a guideline or a budget to be able to organize the economic viability of this category?”, asks Admilson Nunis de Souza, director of agricultural policies at the Federation of Rural Workers Farmers and Family Farmers of the State of Pernambuco (FETAPE)
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The objective of the initiative was to minimize the impacts of the pandemic on the sector and recover part of the impacts suffered with reductions in federal government programs, such as the Food Acquisition Program (PAA), which suffered a cut of almost 50% in the 2020 budget for 2021. While in 2020, the budget provided for in the Annual Budget Law was R$ 202.7 million, in 2021 this amount decreased to R$ 101.7 million.
“Farmers began to go less to the cities, to participate less in fairs, some city halls canceled the purchase of food by the PNAE (National School Feeding Program); the PAA – which is also national – had a reduction in the resources allocated. So, the PEAAF came to compose a budget for this segment of family farming”, said Alexandre.
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Pernambuco is currently the state with the most agroecological fairs in the Northeast and the second in the country, second only to São Paulo; with 1,030 farmers registered as organic producers in the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Supply.
“The issue is in food and nutritional security, because not all food today is food, there are some today that are just a volume of food. Food is something else, it’s what you eat and it doesn’t harm you but nourishes you”, analyzed Admilison, who believes in the importance of valuing the category for the population’s food security. “So, this is our concern in family farming and FETAPE has had this concern since its birth until today, because for us it is not possible to represent a category of the size that is family farming and this category itself is in need”, concludes.
To Brazil in fact, the staff of the Government of Pernambuco informed that the Secretary of Agrarian Development, Claudiano Filho, will participate in a meeting with the executive secretaries of family agriculture and management, to discuss the progress of the program on the 25th of August.
The office also informed that, due to the pandemic, some steps and processes were slower, but now, based on the resumption plan, the process should be faster. The next steps involve the creation of a steering committee to monitor and monitor the program’s actions, which will be managed by the Pernambuco Government’s Agrarian Development Secretariat.
Source: BoF Pernambuco
Edition: Monyse Ravenna