Sustainable Agriculture and Resistance: Transforming Food Production in Cuba
This is a story of resistance against all odds, of Cuba’s remarkable recovery from a food crisis brought on by the collapse of trade relations with the former Socialist Bloc and the tightening of the US trade embargo. Unable to import either food or materials needed for conventional agriculture, Cuba turned inward to self-reliance. Sustainable agriculture, organic farming, urban gardens, smaller farms, animal traction, and biological pest control are all part of the new Cuban agriculture. In this book, Cuban authors offer details of these remarkable achievements to serve as guideposts toward healthier, more environmentally friendly and self-reliant farming.
340 pages, illustrated
Co-published by Food First Books and ACTAF (Cuban Association of Agricultural and Forestry Technicians) and CEAS (Center for the Study of Sustainable Agriculture, Agrarian University of Havana)
The World’s First National Experiment in Sustainable Agriculture
Sustainable Agriculture and Resistance: Transforming Food Production in Cuba is the story of Cuba’s remarkable achievements in the use sustainable agriculture, organic farming, urban gardens, smaller farms, animal traction, and biological pest control to feed the country.
"To understand Cuban agricultural development we must first look at the richness of detail in this volume. Then we have to step back and squint to capture the truly novel pathway of development that Cuba is pioneering. And then once again we have to focus in on the details, and glimpse the processes through which Cuba is creating something truly new and hopeful for all of humanity. "
—from the epilogue by Professor Richard Levins, Harvard University School of Public Health
Cuba’s remarkable recovery from a food crisis brought on by the collapse of trade relations with the former Socialist Bloc and the tightening of the US trade embargo came about by the use of sustainable agriculture, organic farming, urban gardens, smaller farms, animal traction, and biological pest control. In Sustainable Agriculture and Resistance: Transforming Food Production in Cuba, Cuban authors offer details—for the first time in English—of these remarkable achievements, to serve as guideposts toward healthier, more environmentally friendly and self-reliant farming.
"The Cuban experience has demonstrated that the adoption of agroecological methods can bring about productive and economic benefits in a socially equitable manner. The advances achieved by Cuba...offer a valuable set of lessons for the millions of people throughout the world who are committed to a truly sustainable agriculture."
—from the prologue by Professor Miguel Altieri, Environmental Studies, University of California at Berkeley
Table of Contents
Note from the Editors
Prologue: Principles and Strategies of Agroecology in Cuba/Miguel Altieri
Introduction: Lessons of Cuban Resistance/Peter Rosset and Martin Bourque
PART I: History, Context, and Structures of Change
* Chapter One: The Organic Farming Movement in Cuba/Fernando Funes
* Chapter Two: Cuban Agriculture Before 1990/Armando Nova
* Chapter Three: Cuban Agriculture and Food Security/Marcos Nieto and Ricardo Delgado
* Chapter Four: Transforming the Cuban Countryside: Property, Markets, and Technological Change/Lucy Martín
* Chapter Five: Social Organization and Sustainability of Small Farm Agriculture in Cuba/Mavis D. Álvarez
* Chapter Six: Agroecological Education and Training/Luis García
PART II: Alternative Practices for a New Agriculture
* Chapter Seven: Ecological Pest Management/Nilda Pérez and Luis L. Vázquez
* Chapter Eight: Intercropping in Cuba/Antonio Casanova, Pedro L. Quintero, and Adrián Hernández
* Chapter Nine: Mechanization, Animal Traction, and Sustainable Agriculture/Arcadio Ríos and Félix Ponce
* Chapter Ten: Advances in Organic Soil Management/Eolia Treto, Margarita García, Rafael Martínez-Viera, and José M. Febles
* Chapter Eleven: The Integration of Crops and Livestock/Marta Monzote, Eulogio Muñoz, and Fernando Funes Monzote
PART III: Examples and Case Studies
* Chapter Twelve: Green Medicine: An Option of Richness/Mercedes García
* Chapter Thirteen: The Growth of Urban Agriculture/Nelso Companioni, Egidio Páez, Yanet Ojeda Hernández, and Catherine Murphy
* Chapter Fourteen: “Cultivo Popular”: Small-Scale Rice Production/Miguel Socorro, Luis Alemán, and Salvador Sánchez
* Chapter Fifteen: Sugarcane and Sustainability in Cuba/Rafael Suárez Rivacoba and Rafael B. Morín
* Chapter Sixteen: Case Studies: The Mixed Experiences of Two New Cooperatives/Niurka Pérez and Dayma Echevarría
List of Acronyms
About the Authors
Directory of Institutions and Authors