Food & Water Watch works with organizations in Africa to promote a healthy food system and safe, affordable water for all Africans.
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Governments in Africa are facing enormous pressure by world financial institutions, agribusiness, and even some international aid organizations to replace traditional small scale farming with factory-style food production. Factory farms would emphasize growing more of fewer types of crops, such as corn, cotton, and sorghum, for export around the world. U.S.-based global agrochemical and grain trading corporations are pushing for greater use of specialty seeds, including genetically engineered varieties, and chemical pesticides and fertilizers to aid the growth of those monoculture export crops.
In 2006, the United Nations predicted that half the African population will live in countries facing water stress within 25 years. Sub-Saharan Africa has the lowest level access to potable water and sanitation in the world; 55 percent of the population lives without access to clean water.
A typical American uses more water flushing toilets each day than the water available to an average person in Africa.
Multinational corporations have taken advantage of the growing water crisis in Africa for financial gain. Aided by the World Bank, corporations receive subsidies to privatize water utilities and management. The corporations cherry pick water systems that are profitable and demand contracts that ignore the needs of the poor.
Working with a network of African civil society groups, Food & Water Watch challenges policies and practices that favor corporate control of water. We track donor policies and work for more efficient use of aid.
Water for Flowers?
Groups Call to Support People in Kenya, Not Corporate Flower Farms
On January 31, 2008, Public interest organizations in Canada, Europe, Kenya, and the United States called on the international community to help the people suffering from violence in the Lake Naivasha region of Kenya, not the global industrial flower farms that exploit the lake and its people. Food & Water Watch and the Council of Canadians released a new report, , highlighting the destructive practices of the flower farms that dominate the region.