Menominee Food Sovereignty
The College of Menominee Nation is taking steps towards strengthening Food Sovereignty on the Menominee Reservation. Check out the current CMN projects to the left. Read below to learn more about what Food Sovereignty is and its role in American Indian communities.
Menominee Food Sovereignty programming is made possible through collaborative partnerships with the Department of Continuing Education, Sustainable Development Institute, and Menominee County UW-Extension.
The term ‘Food Sovereignty’ is a relatively new one. The term was first coined by Via Campesina, an international grassroots organization, in 1996. Food Sovereignty asserts that the people who produce, distribute, and consume food should control the mechanisms and policies of food production and distribution, rather than corporations and markets that have come to dominate the global food system.
There is a strong Food Sovereignty movement within American Indian Communities. According to NAFSA (Native Agriculture and Food System Initiative), “it’s about reconnecting to the land and rediscovering growing practices that are in tune with the environment. It’s about revitalizing rich cultural traditions tied to seasonal growing and gathering practices. It’s about nutrition and health, reversing a tide of unhealthy eating resulting from the loss of land, nutritious foods, and traditional lifeways.” The Traditional Plants and Foods Program of Northwest Indian College points out six community factors that exhibit Tribal Food Sovereignty:
- Have access to healthy food;
- Have foods that are culturally appropriate;
- Grow, gather, hunt and fish in ways that are maintainable over the long term;
- Distribute foods in ways so people get what they need to stay healthy;
- Adequately compensate the people who provide the food; and
- Utilize tribal treaty rights and uphold policies that ensure continued access to traditional foods.