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New Dynamics and Trajectories of Agrarian Change in Bolivia: The Soy Complex and ‘de-peasantization’
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New Dynamics and Trajectories of Agrarian Change in Bolivia: The Soy Complex and ‘de-peasantization’

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  • Extreme inequalities; high rates of poverty <br /> Agriculture still extremely important for rural livelihoods
  • Bohan Plan comissioned by US government officials led by Merwin Bohan in 1941-42. <br /> $26 million from the Export-Import Bank of the United States for infrastructure development, research institutions, and initiating a new agricultural model based on large scale farms for export mixed with small –scale farms for domestic consumption.
  • A period of cronyism, political allies secured massive wealth through land and natural resources
  • *Closed state mines; Currency devalued, new monetary unit established in 1986; FDI increased; Protectionism and ISI policies dismantled <br /> <br /> *1990, $30-ha; 2014, $2000-$5000-ha <br /> <br /> Eastern Lowlands Project supported large-scale land expansion for export-oriented agriculture, mainly for soy production. Financial and technical transfer to large-scale landowners. 1990-1996 ag. export fr. Santa Cruz increased 400%
  • Prcoess of depeasantization involves the erosion of peasant practives (family labour, mainly subsistence) and the subsitution of market rationality in agriculture. It is represented as the expulsion of small producers (and peasants) from the land. There are 1.2 billion peasants in the world today, while 40% of the world’s population lives in small farm households (McMichael, 2012).
  • As we can see, the soy industry plays a very important role in the Bolivian economy and agricultural land use.
  • Prior to structural adjustment policies of 1985, the peasant sector produced 70% of Bolivia’s national food supply. By 2003, this had reduced to 45% and has continued to decrease as industrial crops for export are displacing traditional crops.
  • Soybean meal (cake) is primarily used as an additive in animal feed;
  • Total: 300,000 ha controlled by these 4 groups, while the total soy land area is just over 1 million ha. These are some of the main groups, but private individuals also control very large tracts of land.
  • Agro-industria de Bolivia 7 empresas controlen 96% de las exportaciones y 88% de los centros de acopios y processadoras
  • Not only have imports increased, but also the price per ton.
  • Pero tb los precios del grano de soya estaa subiendo, esto influye la gente a seguir con la soya
  • Pero los redimientos son muy volatil, y desde llegue el transgenico hay mas problemas con plaguas y fertilidad

New Dynamics and Trajectories of Agrarian Change in Bolivia: The Soy Complex and ‘de-peasantization’ New Dynamics and Trajectories of Agrarian Change in Bolivia: The Soy Complex and ‘de-peasantization’ Presentation Transcript

  • New dynamics and trajectories of agrarian change in Bolivia: The soy complex and ‘depeasantization’ Ben McKay International Institute of Social Studies (ISS) The Hague, Netherlands mckay@iss.nl
  • Bolivia’s agrarian structure  Rural population: 33.5% (pop=~10 million) ◦ Agriculture: 30% of total employment (INE, 2011; IFAD, 2010)  Rural poverty = 66.43% ◦ Extreme rural poverty = 45.48% (INE, 2011)  ~660,000 total farm units ◦ 87% of farms control just 14% of cultivated land (Urioste, 2010; World Bank, 2007)
  • A brief history of Bolivia’s agrarian structure since 1952 • 1953 agrarian reform – 1950 • 50% of land controlled by 0.72% of farmers • 0.23% of land controlled by 60% (Malloy and Thorn, 1971) – Bohan Plan and the ‘March to the East’
  • A brief history of Bolivia’s agrarian structure since 1952  Banzer’s military dictatorship 1971-79 ◦ Millions of dollars and thousands of hectares fraudently distributed to political allies, some receiving up to 50,000 hectares (Urioste, 2010) ◦ Suppression of working class and peasantry ◦ Backed by Washington for efforts to stop coca growing
  • A brief history of Bolivia’s agrarian structure since 1952  Neoliberal restructuring 1985 ◦ 1980s: High national debt; GDP declining; high inflation; international price of tin plummeted ◦ 1985: New Economic Plan and structural adjustment* ◦ World Bank’s $56.4 million ‘Proyecto Tierras Baja’ and PLUS 1991-1997 ◦ Land market liberalized* ◦ Many Brazilians, mainly from Rio Grande do Sul, Parana, Santa Catarina, went to Bolivia ◦ Mechanization of agriculture began  1996 INRA Reforma Agraria #2 ◦ Land regularization ◦ Formalizing and distribution land rights to indigenous groups (TCOs) ◦ Land must fulfill a ‘socio-economic function’ (FES)
  • A brief history of Bolivia’s agrarian structure since 1952  INRA Land Reform 1996 ◦ 2004: Only10.7% of land was ‘regularized’ (saneamiento) (INRA, 2006) ◦ More than 50% of land distributed between 1953- 2002 went to large scale farmers with an average of 1,596 ha and representing just 17% of total land beneficiaries ◦ 8.41% of distributed land went to peasant and family farmers (6-50ha) representing 33% of total land beneficaries (Kay and Urioste, 2007)
  • Processes of depeasantization in Santa Cruz  ~1985 – present ◦ Model of agricultural production has changed  Capital intensive; limited labour requirements ◦ Social differentiation in the countryside
  • Processes of depeasantization in Santa Cruz  Character of agrarian change ◦ Mechanization of agriculture ◦ Industrial crops ◦ Export-oriented ◦ High levels of capital investment ◦ New technologies and innovative techniques ◦ Liberalized land markets ◦ Foreign investment and land control (Brazilians, Japonese, Argentinian, Menonites)
  • ‘Agrarian Revolution’ 2006  4 principal policies 1. Distribution/redistribution of fiscal and private lands 2. Mechanization programme 3. Credit for small producers 4. Markets for small producers
  • Pequeño (0-50) Mediano (51-1000) Grande (Más de 1000) % de productores de soya 78% 20% 2% % de tierra de soya 9% 20% 70% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% % Landholding structure for soya, Santa Cruz 2011 Type of producer(ha) Percentage Number of producers Percentage of land Small (0-50) 78% 11,000 9% (98,253/1,091,070) Medium (51-1000) 20% 2,800 20% (218,340/1,091,070) Large (More than 1000) 2% 300 70% (775,107/1,091,070) Total 100% 14,100 100% ANAPO, 2011
  • Expansion of the agricultural frontier  1990-2011: Soy plantations increased 530%  2010-2011: Soy plantations occupied 36% of Bolivia’s total cultivated area  Export Value ◦ Soya and derivatives = $USD 1.175 billion (IBCE, 2014)  Top 4 exports: gas natural (37.1%), zinc (13%), plata (11.5%), y soya (10.6%)* (INE, 2012)  Development for whom? Prof. Philip M. Fearnside of the National Institute for Research in the Amazon (INPA) in Manaus, suggests that soy plantations displace 11 agricultural workers for every one it employs (Fearnside, 2001)
  • Expanding the agricultural frontier 0 500000 1000000 1500000 2000000 2500000 3000000 3500000 1990-1991 1991-1992 1992-1993 1993-1994 1994-1995 1995-1996 1996-1997 1997-1998 1998-1999 1999-2000 2000-2001 2001-2002 2002-2003 2003-2004 2004-2005 2005-2006 2006-2007 2007-2008 2008-2009 2009-2010 2010-2011(p) Total Cultivated Area (ha) Industrial Oilseeds** (excluding soy) CEREALES* Soya Total **Cotton, sugarcane, sunflower Peanut oil *Rice, barley, grains, maize, quinoa, sorghum, wheat Source: INE, 2011
  • Table 1: Regional evolution of principle crops in Bolivia (in hectares), 1950-2014 Crop/Year 1950(a) 1972(a) 1991(a) 1997(a) 2002(b) 2004(b) 2006(b) 2008(b) 2010(b) 2012(b)* 2014(b)* Andean Region (c) Maize 94,291 157,500 180,625 166,144 185,071 185,321 190,609 195,979 182,469 197,619 177,894 Potato 111,680 107,200 135,881 121,914 121,352 136,765 154,434 172,875 173,855 186,532 190,209 Onions 61,194 101,000 95,297 86,508 6,415 6,948 7,638 8,483 8,772 9,014 9,020 Wheat 82,950 61,066 77,933 81,536 76,546 76,740 77,440 78,698 83,181 86,418 88,230 Quinoa 18,998 15,000 38,791 38,680 37,325 40,541 46,316 50,356 63,010 96,544 169,093 Broadbeans 9,226 21,000 27,210 27,649 29,432 30,679 32,117 33,640 33,516 35,187 36,596 Alfalfa 6,325 15,200 17,705 20,880 22,225 23,933 26,593 29,574 30,237 30,110 31,585 TOTAL 384,664 477,966 573,442 543,311 478,366 500,927 535,147 569,605 575,040 641,425 702,627 Growth Index 100 122 140 130 124 130 139 148 149 167 183 Department of Santa Cruz Maize 19,177 57,940 43,500 99,300 124,225 124,957 156,465 209,221 128,522 206,622 188,989 Wheat 1,755 2,097 38,493 76,860 55,800 30,200 48,000 56,072 93,250 72,878 99,516 Rice 10,151 34,220 72,318 83,776 85,000 120,000 133,200 132,631 144,507 133,275 116,471 Sugar cane 10,548 37,500 67,458 75,120 87,525 91,242 99,624 135,415 136,217 131,680 139,957 Cotton 109 68,222 16,523 52,000 2,200 9,300 7,500 4,500 700 8,000 2,989 Soya 0 1,100 183,865 513,190 629,000 796,100 940,000 832,098 918,847 1,091,700 1,239,825 Sunflower 0 150 10,217 89,000 178,300 83,000 99,350 259,214 235,430 220,768 203,000 Sorghum 0 0 28,000 45,000 60,500 72,000 95,000 134,292 87,000 192,850 273,268 TOTAL 41,740 201,229 460,374 1,034,246 1,222,550 1326799 1579139 1763443 1744472.81 2057773 2264015 Growth Index 100 482 1,103 2,478 2,929 3,179 3,783 4,225 4,179 4,930 5,424 Fuentes: (a) Kay and Urioste (2007); (b) INE, various years; (c) The Andean region includes the departments of La Paz, Oruro, Cochabamba, Chuquisaca, Potosí and Tarija; *indicates preliminary results.
  • 50% 2% 4% 4% 25% 14% 1% Cultivation area by crop type (1990-1991) CEREALES ESTIMULANTES FRUTALES HORTALIZAS ALEAGINOSAS INDUSTRIALES TUBÉRCULOS Y RAÍCES FORRAJES 34% 1%4% 4% 47% 7% 0% 3% Cultivation area by crop type (2011-2012p) CEREALES ESTIMULANTES FRUTALES HORTALIZAS ALEAGINOSAS INDUSTRIALES TUBÉRCULOS Y RAÍCES FORRAJES OTHER 75% 53% 25% 47% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% % Year Land use change for industrial and staple crops, 1991-2012 % of land for staple crops % of land for industrial commodities (INE, 2013)
  • Expanding the agricultural frontier  Food security?  Food sovereignty? (Law 337)  “Never before has Bolivia imported as much food as in the years 2006-2010, with imports calculated at a value of over US$1.1 billion” - Miguel Urioste, 2012
  • Expanding the agricultural frontier  1996-2009: 3.3 million ha illegally deforested ◦ ~330,000 ha/year, which represents one of the highest levels of deforestation in the world (UN-REDD; INE 2011)  A study by Muller et al (2013) suggests that 81.1% of deforestation in Bolivia is caused by the soy industry and cattle grazing
  • Deforestation in Bolivia  Areas under pressure of deforestation  Areas deforested UNDP-Bolivia, 2008
  • Source: Google Earth Soy expansion, Santa Cruz 1984-2012
  • Bolivia and the global food regime  GM seeds, machinery, and chemical inputs imported from Brazil and Argentina  Prices derived from Chicago Board of Trade ◦ China and EU demand ◦ Financialization of food and the food system ◦ Monopolization of silos, processing, and export markets
  • Bolivia and the global food regime  Principal markets for Bolivian soy and derivatives, 2013 ◦ Colombia 44% ◦ Perú 27% ◦ Ecuador 9% ◦ Venezuela 7% ◦ Spain 4% (IBCE, 2014)  . Source: Probioma,
  • *87% of soy production is for export
  • Foreign companies cultivating soy in Bolivia Country of origin Company Hectares cultivated per year Brazil Grupo Mónica 50.000 has Brazil Grupo Gama (Sojima y Tierra Azul) 90.000-100.000 has Brazil Unisoya 50.000 has Argentina Varios grupos 100.000 has (Urioste, 2011); **original de un estudio por Mamerto Pérez Luna de CEDLA y su fuente era El Deber, 15 mayo 2005
  • (Urioste, 2011; Probioma, 2010; *datos de ANAPO, varias años)
  • GRAVETAL Bolivia S.A 31% Industrias de Aceite S.A (FINO) 22%ADM SAO S.A 13% GRANOS 9% Industrias Oleaginosas S.A. (RICO) 9% Cargill Bolivia S.A 11% Cooperativa Agropecuaria Integral Colonias de Okinawa (CAICO) 1% Otras 4% Market share of Bolivia’s soy (+derivatives) export market, 2012 Fuente: AEMP, 2013 GRAVETAL Bolivia S.A 19% Industrias de Aceite S.A (FINO) 19% ADM SAO S.A 16% GRANOS 12% Industrias Oleaginosas S.A. 11% Cargill Bolivia S.A 8% Cooperativa Agropecuaria Integral Colonias de Okinawa (CAICO) 3% Otras 12% Market share of silos and processing, 2011 Fuente: AEMP, 2013
  • 0 100 200 300 400 500 600 700 800 0 2000 4000 6000 8000 10000 12000 14000 2000 2002 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 $US/MT MetricTons Year Soybean seed imports, Bolivia 2000-2012 Seed Imports (MT) Prices ($USD/MT) Source: INE; AEMP, 0 100 200 300 400 500 600 700 800 900 0 5000 10000 15000 20000 25000 30000 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 MetricTons Año Prices and quantities of fertilizer imports, Bolivia 2000-2012 Fertilizantes (Tm.) Precios Imp. Fertilizantes ($usd/Tm)
  • 157 195 155 135 155 140 154 165 235 155 185 205 400 295 280 400 372.5 333.5 0 50 100 150 200 250 300 350 400 450 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 Price of soybean, Bolivia, 1995-2013 Precio (US$/t) (ANAPO, 2014)
  • 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 2.5 3 0 100000 200000 300000 400000 500000 600000 700000 800000 900000 1000000 1972 1974 1976 1978 1980 1982 1984 1986 1988 1990 1992 1994 1996 1998 2000 2002 2004 2006 2008 2010 2012 Production(t) Area(ha) Source: ANAPO 2013. Memoria Anual. Santa Cruz: Land area, yields, and production of soy, summer harvest 1972- 2012 Superficie (ha) Rendimiento (t/ha) 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 %oflandcultivatedwithsoya Año Percentage of land cultivated with transgenic (GM) and conventional seeds, Bolivia 2005-2010 Convencional Trangénica Fuente: IBCE, 2011; ISAAA, 2012
  • Processes of ‘depeasantization’ in Santa Cruz ◦ 2002: Costs of production of soy $263 USD/ha ◦ 2010: $460 USD/ha ◦ 2002: Costs of production of maiz $236 USD/ha ◦ 2010: $576 USD/ha
  • Processes of ‘depeasantization’ in Santa Cruz  Key challenges for small producers in Santa Cruz ◦ Capital investment and access to credit  Small producers cannot use land as collateral (asset) for a loan  Rent services for sowing, fumigating, harvesting + cost of inputs = ~$536/ha  Enter into ‘sharing contract’ where landowner receives 25-35% of harvest (private negotiation)
  • Processes of ‘depeasantization’ in Santa Cruz  Risks and challenges for (small) farmers in Santa Cruz ◦ Natural disaster and climate change (floods, drought, pests, erosion) ◦ Lack of tree/vegetation buffers  Obligated to plant monocultures  Wind brings agro-chemicals and pests from afar ◦ Monopolization of intermediaries  7 companies control ~90% of silos/processing. ◦ Access to capital  Very difficult to receive credit + terms/interest rates are high without assets (14-20%) ◦ Access to land now and for future generations  Price of land in Santa Cruz ‘soy region’ ~$2000-$5000 USD ◦ Debt due to harvest/emergencies/nat’l dis./etc = selling land
  • Processes of ‘depeasantization’ in Santa Cruz ◦ 3 principal pathways for small scale farmers integrated in the soy complex in Bolivia 1. Accumulate capital and advance in the soy complex as a small capitalist agricultural producer with machinery 2. Rent land and receive between $100- $200/ha and perhaps find non-farm rural work 3. Sell land and likely migrate to the city for more employment opportunity
  • Building social capital: organization and mobilization  Plurality of peoples, cultures, histories  Political divisions within communities  Lack sufficient support from state  EMAPA, credit programmes, ‘mechanization programme’, AR – lacking in coverage, capacity, and design
  • Final thoughts and discussion • ‘Agrarian Revolution’ has failed to benefit the majority of rural population; unequal agrarian structure persists • New laws strenghtening private property and against land occupation (MST-Bolivia) • Internal conflicts between/within principal CSOs  Bolivia’s model of ‘development’ remains based on extraction of raw materials for export (from minerals, natural gas, soy) with very little industrial development for value-added production  Current rural development trajectory: ‘depeasantization’ and the end of small scale family farming? ◦ Where will the 594,000 (2M+ppl) small farming families go?  Urban economy absorption?  Expanding informal economy (highest % in Latin America)?  Increased poverty (2009=51.3%)?
  • Final thoughts and discussion  Inevitable process of modernization?  Contradictions of the agro-industrial complex ◦ Environment ◦ Employment ◦ Food Security