Food campaign news
Building a European movement to tackle food speculation
For the last year, WDM has been leading the UK campaign to get new rules introduced to tackle food speculation. We've been focusing our efforts on exposing the role of banks, like Barclays, in driving up food prices and we've been mobilising public pressure to get the UK government to support effective regulation on food speculation.
The European Commission is set to publish a set of financial reform proposals in the autumn which will include measures to address excessive financial speculation which is causing food prices to rocket to record levels.
As a UK based organisation, we are focusing targeting our own government, whose policies we know is a major obstacle to getting effective legislation approved. However, the fight for regulation is not one that we can win alone. And so we have been also investing our energies into building a European-wide coalition of campaigners to ensure that decision makers in the EU member states are all hearing the same message: that high food prices can be tackled in a relatively straightforward way through regulating excessive speculation.
I went to Brussels last week to meet some of our European partners to co-ordinate our campaign activities and it was inspiring (and reassuring!) that we don't have to win this campaign on our own.
We have the backing of a growing movement of campaigners across Europe who will speak to their elected representatives in their own country governments and in the European parliament. We are working on joint-initiatives to tackle different bits of the wider campaign such as exposing European-based banks and getting European public pension funds to withdraw from their speculative investments.
You can influence the vote
We have identified a key European parliamentary vote on 5 July – about tightening up rules on shadowy unregulated deals including speculating on food - which would really benefit from collaboration from campaigners across the 27 European member states.
As part of this wider European group, we want to do our part and ask that you join with us. We are trying to get as many UK citizens to email their MEPs before 5 July and ask them to back the rules which will help to bring some transparency to these deals and take the first step towards tackling damaging food speculation.
Please note that the following action has now finished: update coming shortly.
Lets show the decision makers that there is a growing voice across Europe that wants to stop bankers betting on hunger.
Heidi is a campaigns officer at WDM, working to stop excessive speculation in food in financial markets.