The Agrofuels Transition: Restructuring Places and Spaces in the Global Food System

Annie Shattuck and Eric Holt-Giménez | 06.01.2009

In Bulletin of Science Technology & Society, June 2009, 29(3): 180-188.

Abstract

Despite recent critiques of agrofuels, the industry is booming, signaling transformations in the world’s food and fuels systems. International financial institutions, biotechnology firms, governments, and agribusiness are restructuring control over land, genetic resources, economic space, and market power. These moves prefer transnational capital at the expense of farmers in the North and extensive areas vital to the livelihoods of small producers in the Global South. This article suggests that the agrofuels boom may be a new—and particularly destructive—stage in industry’s extractive transformations of agriculture. The movement-based logic of food sovereignty—people’s right to define their own food and agriculture systems—suggests a rollback of the “agrofuels transition” is possible.

KEYWORDS: agrofuels, territorial restructuring, places and spaces

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