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Big land grabs rob people of their homes, jobs and food. Get informed and take action!

Get informed and take action!

Very often, land sold as ‘unused’ or ‘underdeveloped’ is actually being used by women to grow food, raise livestock, and collect water and firewood for their families; women who have limited ownership of land and little power to claim their rights. 

"You don't need guns to kill people. When you take food from a village by destroying farm lands and ash crops, you are starving its people [...] These things must stop. Our people deserve the right to survive. They shouldn't be denied their land." - from Liberia

Poor women are paying an unacceptably high price for this global land rush. 


Saibi Mrisho, Tanzania, prepares to make charcoal by stacking wood, covering it with leaves and earth and slow burning it over 3 days. Image: Oxfam

Here are the top facts you need to know about the global land rush:

Every second, poor countries lose an area of land the size of a soccer field to banks and private investor

Two thirds of foreign land deals take place in developing countries with serious hunger problems

Sixty percent of land deals over the past decade have been to grow crops to produce biofuels rather than food 

  • Factors like rising food prices and a demand for new fuels have caused a huge rush of big land grabs
  • Poor families are losing the land they rely on to grow food—often evicted without fair treatment or compensation.
  • The World Bank’s own research reveals that countries with the most large scale land deals are those with the poorest protection of people’s land rights. 
  • In the last four years, 21 formal complaints have been brought by communities affected by World Bank projects that they say have violated their rights.


The scale and pace of land acquisition is staggering:

33 million hectares

The area of land in poor countries that is known to have been acquired by foreign investors between 2000 and 2013.

Every 25 days

In poor countries, foreign investors have been acquiring an area of land the size of Montreal every 25 days.

The past decade

In the past decade, an area of land the size of Italy has been sold off to foreign investors globally.


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