Bio-cultural diversity in South America. Overcoming agro-extractivism linked to unhealthy diets

Tribaldos, Theresa; Jacobi, Johanna; Llanque, Aymara; Nogales, Maria Teresa (2022). Bio-cultural diversity in South America. Overcoming agro-extractivism linked to unhealthy diets. In: Kevany, Kathleen; Prosperi, Paolo (eds.) Routledge Handbook of Sustainable Diets (pp. 636-647). London: Routledge 10.4324/9781003174417-60

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Agro-extractivism in Latin America, as a model of large-scale monocultures of agricultural commodity export for the maximisation of profit from agricultural land, leads to the exploitation of agricultural resources including not only water, land, and soil but also human labour and animals. It often removes people from their land, erodes local culture and knowledge, involves severe deforestation, soil degradation, environmental pollution, and diminishes biodiversity and agrobiodiversity. Thus, agro-extractivism has severe implications for food security, sustainability, and equity. The inherent simplification and specialisation of whole landscapes ultimately leads to the collapse of local food systems, which limits livelihood opportunities for rural populations, and undermines healthy and sustainable diets. A potential to counterbalance this development lies in diversity throughout the whole food system with particular emphasis on bio-cultural diversity manifesting in healthy social-ecological systems and diverse, healthy diets. Cases from Bolivia and Brazil highlight how food system activities can support different types of diversity when local people jointly construct their food systems, while at the same time strengthening intra-communal links. Such initiatives serve to regain control over local food systems in places where governments fail to provide food security and fight inequality.

Item Type:

Book Section (Book Chapter)


10 Strategic Research Centers > Centre for Development and Environment (CDE)

UniBE Contributor:

Tribaldos, Theresa Margarete, Jacobi, Johanna






[1499] Just transition: tackling inequalities to a neutral food system
[805] Sustainability Governance




Melchior Peter Nussbaumer

Date Deposited:

01 Feb 2023 09:58

Last Modified:

01 Feb 2023 23:28

Publisher DOI:



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