Slash and burn farming generates more carbon annually than all air travel put together. It sits at the crossroads of two of the greatest threats to global stability: accelerating climate change and diminishing food security.

Up In Smoke follows British scientist Mike Hands, who has laboured for 25 years to find a solution to replacing slash & burn agriculture in equatorial rainforests.

And he’s found it.

Filmed over 4 years in Honduras and the UK, the this fascinating film presents a historic opportunity to address one of the most urgent issues of the present day. It parallels the farmer’s struggles with Mike Hands attempts to get heavyweight political backing, as he tries to get the Inga Tree and alley-cropping technique onto the agenda at the 2009 Copenhagen Summit. But is the world ready to listen?

Director/Camera: Adam Wakeling

Duration: 70’/52′

Producers: Adam Wakeling / Claire Ferguson

Executive Producers: Jess Search / Brian Woods

Presales: NRK Norway / SVT Sweden / NHK Japan / Channel 4 UK

Editing: Claire Ferguson

Sound Design: Steve Single

Grierson Awards: Nominated Best Newcomer 2012

Sheffield International Doc Festival: Honourable Mention 2011

Paris International Film Festival: Prix Buffon 2012

Millennium Film Festival: Silver UNDP Award

Deauville Film Festival: Silver Award

Festival International Delle Terre: 1st Prize Gold

Up in Smoke has been distributed to TV broadcasters in over 35 different countries, including the following:

CHANNEL 4 UK, NHK JAPAN, DOCUMENTARY CHANNEL USA, NRK NORWAY, SVT SWEDEN, DISCOVERY LATIN AMERICA, BANDEIRANTES BRAZIL, ARTE GERMANY/FRANCE and many more. It has also been screened in multiple educational institutions and has been downloaded and viewed many thousands of times online.

Many of the original distribution terms have now expired. For any licensing queries, please contact us here.

On release, the documentary had an immediate boosting effect on the fortunes of the Inga Foundation, the charity responsible for the revolutionary technique that is alley-cropping with Inga. Donations jumped startlingly, exposure and inquiries came in from all over the world, to the extent that the technique has been expanded throughout Central America and beyond. 

The film caught the attention of Dame Vivienne Westwood, whose financial support made it possible for a 7 language educational version of the film to be produced by Notion Pictures. That 30minutes educational DVD is now being used in the field to spread the message further.

Were the appropriate funding to be in place, the Inga Foundation has expressed an interest in producing a follow up film to show the impact of alley cropping since the film’s launch. Please contact us here if you wish to explore any opportunities in this area.