Publications Overview


What is disconcerting about the current large-scale land investments in Africa is the lack of transparency of the deals. The Oakland Institute is making available detailed information and documentation collected in the course of our research.


Please click on the links below to access available materials, organized by country or actor.

Media Advisory: Indian Agriculture Investments in Ethiopia: A Boon or a Bane?

MEDIA ADVISORY: For Press Conference on February 5, 2013

Media Contacts: Anuradha Mittal +1-510-469-5228,

Ashwin Parulkar 91-9650930467,

Press Release: Do You Know What Your Pension Fund is Doing in Africa?

December 4, 2012, 8:00 am EST

Contact: Anuradha Mittal,; (510) 469-5228


It's 2 am in Africa--Do You Know What Your Pension Fund is Doing There?

New Report Looks at Private Equity Funds Betting Heavily on Agriculture

Betting on World Agriculture: US Private Equity Managers Eye Agricultural Returns

Following the 2007-2008 financial crisis and the collapse of the housing market, private equity funds have found a new lucrative soft commodity market to invest in – farmland. In a short period of time, obscured from public view, the flow of private capital into farmland and agriculture has grown dramatically worldwide.

How to Make Forest Destruction Look Like “Development”

Bruce Wrobel is a man with his heart in the right place. You see, Bruce is in the agricultural business and he plans to solve the world’s complex food security issues by creating sustainable, community oriented projects. He is the CEO of Herakles Farms – a corporation with some very wealthy friends.

Bruce wants to grow a big palm oil plantation. And we mean BIG. This plantation would be one of the largest in Africa and out of all the land out there, he chose about 73,000 hectares between five protected areas, at the fringe of world’s second largest biodiversity hotspot.

The Herakles Farms project would displace local communities and wreak environmental havoc. This could be the reality in the South West region in Cameroon if Bruce and his buddies are not stopped.

Press Release: Oakland Institute, Greenpeace Expose New York Investors’ Land Grab in Cameroon



New report debunks investors’ effort to greenwash destruction of rainforest and livelihoods

Oakland, USA, 5 September, 2012 – An American owned company with a track record of illegality and links to private equity giant Blackstone Group threatens to destroy rainforests and dislocate local communities in Cameroon.

Land Deal Brief: Massive Deforestation Portrayed as Sustainable Investment: The Deceit of Herakles Farms in Cameroon

From its very name, American-owned SG Sustainable Oils Cameroon, Ltd. (SGSOC) presents a pro-environment, pro-resources image. This is supported by an impressive-sounding partnership with an NGO by the name of All for Africa and as a package typifies the kind of convoluted modern-day foreign investment going on in Africa. It is sadly all too familiar to communities on the ground. They are unimpressed with promises of infrastructure and jobs, and angry about their loss of land and livelihoods.

Comprendre les Investissements Fonciers en Afrique: Herakles Farms au Cameroon: Une Deforestation Massive Travestie en Projets de Developpement Durable

Par son nom même, la société américaine SG Sustainable Oils Cameroon, Ltd (SGSOC) revendique son attachement à la préservation de l’environnement et à une exploitation durable des ressources naturelles. Elle met aussi en avant un partenariat avec All for Africa, une ONG prétendument de ‘développement’, à travers un montage emblématique des circonvolutions qu'empruntent désormais les investissements fonciers en Afrique... Les communautés locales ne sont malheureusement que trop familières de telles pratiques et ne se laissent plus leurrer par des promesses non-tenues de création d’emplois et d’infrastructures. Elles sont en colère face à la perte de leurs terres et de leurs moyens de subsistance. Elles s’opposent à une stratégie délibérée qui voudrait faire croire que détruire des forêts tropicales pour les transformer en plantations industrielles est nécessaire au développement.

Press Statement: Lives on Hold

Press Statement from Anuradha Mittal, Executive Director of the Oakland Institute, on the Institute’s latest report, Lives on Hold, which documents the impact of AgriSol’s land deal in Tanzania. Released at press call, July 9, 2012


Press Release: Lives on Hold--AgriSol's Land Deal in Tanzania Creates an Uncertain Future for More than 160,000 People

Report embargoed until 12:00 am EDT, JULY 9, 2012

Contact: Anuradha Mittal 

(510) 469-5228;


Lives on Hold

AgriSol's Land Deal in Tanzania Creates an Uncertain Future for More than 160,000 People


A new report provides details from the ground as the investor faces the Iowa Ethics Commission