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Convergence and Divergence in Alternative Agrifood Movements

Alternative Agrifood Movements: Patterns of Convergence and Divergence

ISBN: 978-1-78441-090-2, eISBN: 978-1-78441-089-6

Publication date: 3 December 2014


Through a categorisation of the convergence/divergence frame of this book into conceptual, organisational and analytical, and following a ‘corporate environmental’ and ‘corporate food’ regimes theoretical basis, in this chapter we sum up the findings of this collective work and develop some future research needs. The results presented show that at the conceptual level we can outline two different trends regarding alternative agrifood movements and their social transformation potential. In the global South the movements have a more radical/oppositional focus while in the global North the focus is more alternative/progressive. The context in the latter, where the movements are generally consumers leaded and political consumerism plays an important role, is a serious threat for the movements, leading to a loss of the transformative ideal as mainstreaming and conventionalisation occurs. We wonder if it is possible to build a common fighting strategy with a model perspective that allows global North movements to stay radical/oppositional. At the organisational level we conclude that novel tools are required to build common views promoting oppositional strategies. Experiences from the Diálogo de Saberes suggest that this tool built on different principles and values such as horizontalisation, learning, respect or gender perspective, among others, can be useful in this matter. In this regard, further research is needed to look at how alternative agrifood movements deal with gender and whether ecofeminist theories can help in the process of building a common global oppositional strategy. Finally, the analytical level centred in the production system shows that even at this very pragmatic level the food regime applies and that it is the values underlying each production system what defines the options for convergence and divergence.


Rivera-Ferre, M.G., Constance, D.H. and Renard, M.-C. (2014), "Convergence and Divergence in Alternative Agrifood Movements", Alternative Agrifood Movements: Patterns of Convergence and Divergence (Research in Rural Sociology and Development, Vol. 21), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 313-322.



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