Digital technologies are often touted as a silver bullet to respond to the interconnected crises of food, climate and biodiversity.
Although they are presented by their promoters in governments and corporations as a necessary tool for innovation and for making food systems more efficient and sustainable, the reality is much more complex.
A new report Remote Control and Peasant Intelligence – On Automating Decisions, Suppressing Knowledges and Transforming Ways of Knowing, published by FIAN International, Friends of the Earth Europe and Coventry University's Centre for Agroecology, Water and Resilience, examines the implications of digital technologies taking hold in European agriculture.
It focuses particularly on frictions between new digital technologies and peasant autonomy, agroecology and food sovereignty.
This report is the result of a collective learning trajectory and contains valuable reflections and insights from peasants, pastoralists and critical allies. It is intended as a contribution to an ongoing discussion within the European food sovereignty movement about technology in the context of agroecology.
The viability of a techno-centric model of farming is less relevant than the question of whether it is desirable, and how the food sovereignty movement can effectively build alternative agricultural worlds.