Unpacking Sustainable Intensification: Discourses from Agribusiness

Tuesday, 12 July 2016: 11:00
Location: Prominentenzimmer (Main Building)
Oral Presentation
Douglas CONSTANCE, Sam Houston State University, USA
Jason KONEFAL, Sam Houston State University, USA
Kaitlin GRANT, Sam Houston State University, USA
In response to the growing legitimation crisis of the conventional agrifood system, competing discourses have emerged around the general and opposing positions which can be typed as “agro-ecology” and “sustainable intensification.” The agro-ecology discourse centers on honoring indigenous cultures and appropriate technologies that support a sovereign and decentralized agrifood system aligned with concepts of fair trade, while the sustainable intensification discourse continues the Green Revolution focus on high-technology solutions to growing more food on less land with more efficient use of resources to feed the world aligned with a comparative advantage framework and free trade. Using secondary data gleaned from agribusiness and trade association documents, this research investigates the particular discourses employed by advocates and practitioners of sustainable intensification, in particular the major agribusiness TNCs and their allied organizations.