10 December, 2010

Requiem aeternam: International Federation of Agricultural Producers

I was shocked to learn yesterday from a former staff member that, after 60 years of existence, the International Federation of Agricultural Producers had been liquidated last November by a French court. The Federation had gone through severe financial problems.

IFAP was a forum of discussion between farmers' organisations. Cooperation between farmers in industrial and developing countries, working comitees on regional and emerging global issues, compiling technical guidebooks for producers, voicing the viewpoint of agricultural producers in international policy-making fora: these were the very useful functions of IFAP.

IFAP's website contains useful material for those interested in the viewpoint of farmers on international agricultural policies. The website is still live for now. How long does it take for a provider to erase all content when its bills are no longer paid?

The lesson I ponder today: the current efforts of some public libraries to save and archive Internet content for future generations is very useful in cases like IFAP's where a knowledge institution disappears.

Requiem aeternam
Chant corse - Manuscrits franciscains, Ensemble Organum - Marcel Pérès, Harmonia mundi

Photo: IFAP

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