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Our birthday message to the World Bank: Put seeds back into the hands of farmers

3 July 2024

July 2024 marked the 80th birthday of the World Bank, a publicly funded organisation created in 1944 to eradicate global poverty.

With a delegation of CAFOD supporters who also turned 80 this year, we visited its London headquarters to deliver a birthday message.

The CAFOD birthday card had thousands of messages from supporters, all of which supported one single message for the World Bank: put seeds back into the hands of farmers.

We continue to campaign to fix the food system

This message was delivered a few weeks after Caritas Zambia, one of CAFOD’s partner organisations, shared their concerns about the World Bank’s involvement in a push to change Zambian legislation. This new law would severely limit farmers' ability to freely access their own varieties of seeds. Instead, it will benefit the push for the privatisation of seeds by companies which profit from the sale of privatised seeds.

This is disappointing news, especially for those of us who have been campaigning for change for some time. But we must keep up the pressure to let the World Bank know that thousands of people across the world are standing alongside small-scale farmers as they fight for their rights to seeds.

This is why our 80-year-old CAFOD supporters were at the World Bank: to remind them that we are in this for the long haul, until seeds are back in the hands of farmers!

Fix the food system

The global food system is broken. It doesn’t work for those who work the hardest – small farmers – and it’s a major driver of the climate emergency.