Guatemala’s sugar cane land rush anything but sweet for corn growers

“For the past decade, the corn farmers of this village in southern Guatemala managed to scratch out two harvests of maize a year from the 10 hectares (24.7 acres) of land they rent. But the crop they planted in May will be their last.

‘We no longer have land to grow on because the owners of the land told us that this will be our last harvest there,’ says Moisés Morales, president of the Amanecer farmers’ association. Sugar cane growers, they were told, had offered double the rent that the corn growers paid. The corn farmers couldn’t match the price.”

This in a country where people still die of hunger.

“Farmers are trapped in a land rush in Guatemala, which has one of the most unequal land distribution structures in the world. Before the spike in demand, 78% of Guatemala’s arable land was in the hands of 8% of the population, according to government statistics from 2003.”

Read the full article by Sibylla Brodzinsky in the Guardian here.

Categories: Environment, Land

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