Agriculture and Human Values

, Volume 29, Issue 2, pp 247–258 | Cite as

Food sovereignty movement activism in South Korea: national policy impacts?

  • Larry L. Burmeister
  • Yong-Ju Choi


The transnational agrarian movement La Via Campesina (LVC) seeks to reestablish food sovereignty authority within national borders by removing agriculture from the WTO system. The WTO is a membership organization of participating nation-states that have agreed to abide by the rules of the WTO governance regime. Nominally, at least, changes in these governance rules must be approved by the nation-state members. This paper examines the extent to which South Korean affiliate organizations of LVC, the Korean Peasant League and the Korean Women Peasants Association, have been successful in placing food sovereignty issues on the national agri-food policy agenda in South Korea that challenge the WTO’s neoliberal global governance regime for agriculture. In effect, the success of transnational movements like LVC in challenging global institutions may rest on how well their member affiliates are able to play domestic agri-food politics.


Food sovereignty Korean Peasant League Korean Women Peasants Association La Via Campesina South Korea Transnational agrarian movements WTO 



The authors would like to acknowledge Stephen Scanlan and four anonymous reviewers for their helpful revision comments.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Sociology and AnthropologyOhio UniversityAthensUSA
  2. 2.Nonghyup Economic Research Institute (NHERI)National Agricultural Cooperative FederationSeoulSouth Korea

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