Formed and led by farmers, the Global Farmer Network (GFN) is a non-profit advocacy organization dedicated to the support of global trade and increased access to innovative technology for farmers around the world. The Global Farmer Network Foundation was established to support this effort.
Join us in our mission. Your donation to the Global Farmer Network Foundation will help us identify and engage more farmer voices who are speaking out in support of each other and these issues, working together to feed our families, our communities and the world. See a few of their personal stories below.
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The Global Farmer Roundtable is a special project of the Global Farmer Network Foundation. A few who have attended the Roundtable, share their stories about what it meant to them and how it has impacted their lives, farming operations and communities.
I became the first recipient of “The Kleckner Trade and Technology Advancement Award” and my journey as a biotechnology advocate started to bloom. It was gratifying to be able to be an inspiration to many people locally, nationally and internationally.
Some of my opportunities in this larger arena of influence: I was on a panel during BIO 2009 in Atlanta, Georgia. I shared my biotech experience with Canadian Wheat Growers, corn stakeholders and senior officials in Mexico and Peru, seed farmers and community organizers in Hawaii, and the 2007 APEC conference in Australia. I also spoke in Indonesia, Thailand, Singapore and in my country. Recently, I became a member of the New Vision Agriculture – World Economic Forum.
It’s a wonderful and important mission and I will continue to be an advocate and a modern farmer leader with GFN as my backbone. I believe that choosing innovation and biotechnology will greatly improve the quality, quantity and availability of agricultural products all around the world. When I first came to the Global Farmer Roundtable, I smiled at myself and the world ahead of me; a petite lady farmer from The Philippines representing this big world of agriculture and fighting for its future.
I am thankful to GFN for inviting me to take part in the Global Farmer Roundtable in 2010. It was a turning point in my life. It provided me with the opportunity to realize the potential of farmers. Though we, the Indian farmers, constitute the majority of our population and farming is the major employment provider, we were ignored even in matters relating to our livelihood. I admit that I was a mute and helpless spectator until then. My participation in the Global Farmer Roundtable enabled me to expand my outlook toward farming. I realized that working beyond my farm, I could make my voice heard by the policy makers. In fact, I could motivate my fellow farmers to unite and experience and benefit from our collective strength. Now we have the confidence that, by aggregating our resources, we can improve not only our personal economy at the farm level but the economic development and wellbeing of our nation. I realize that individual farmers have a significant role to play.
Ever since my association with the Global Farmer Network, I have been communicating with our Government and Policy makers personally and through the media. I emphasize the need to adopt new technologies including biotechnology and farm mechanization, and the importance of building infrastructure. As the recipient of “The Kleckner Award For Trade and Technology” in 2013, I am even more committed to the betterment of my fellow farmers. I was invited to attend “World Economic Forum’s New Vision For Agriculture – Transformation Leaders Network” in Geneva in 2014 to share my views with farmers around the world. GFN has enabled me to transform from being a small farmer in a tiny village into a significant world voice for agriculture.
Ever since 2009, I have been involved with the Global Farmer Roundtable program. I have attended three times and have nominated two other Kenyan attendees.
These programs have opened my world view through the exchange with other farmers and listening to presentations at the World Food Prize. I have been able to contribute to the world food security debate. I have written numerous opinion pieces that have been published in Kenyan mass circulation newspapers and other publications worldwide. I have participated in the debate about the use of GM technology to help farmers to produce more efficiently to feed the world’s growing population. I have participated in local and international conferences, contributing ideas on how to grow more food on less land.
On a local level, I have been involved in setting up a farmers’ village cooperative that currently caters to over 300 smallholder farmers. Through the Chepkatet Farmers Co-op Society Limited, these farmers have been empowered with credit, access to quality farm inputs and services like soil testing, fertilizers and seeds, and access to markets through synergized economies of scale.