Latest Farmer Seed Systems Resources

Agroecology points the way towards resilience against climate change

This week the water-stressed city of Cape Town hosts the bi-annual Adaptation Futures conference, where scientists, business leaders, and practitioners from the world of development and agriculture will come together to engage in ‘dialogues for solutions’ to the multifarious problems wrought by our rapidly changing climate. As actors with different perspectives design modes of collaboration, […]

READ

Participatory Plant Breeding and Smallholder Farmers

At the National Seed Dialogue and Celebration, hosted by the African Centre for Biodiversity at Constitution Hill in December 2017, this session on Participatory Plant Breeding and Smallholder Farmers looked at issues of smallholder farmers & seed breeding/crop improvement and the potential roles of smallholder farmers in these processes were discussed. Since the beginning of […]

READ

Spiritual and Cultural Value of Seed in South Africa

Spiritual and Cultural Value of Seed in South Africa is one of a series of six videos covering discussions from the ACB hosted event, National Seed Dialogue and Celebration – December 2017. The seed, like the big bang, or evolution, or the atom … bears the mystifying tale of a beginning. We fill our bellies […]

READ

Seed policy paper: Towards national and regional seed policies in Africa that recognise and support farmer seed systems

The African Centre for Biodiversity (ACB) has prepared this policy discussion document as a contribution towards national and regional seed policies in Africa that recognise and support farmer seed systems. The document is an effort to synthesise the policy issues emerging from our research and advocacy work on farmer seed systems in the past few […]

READ

Insights into our food system: Why did catering indigenous local food at the National Seed Dialogue go so horribly wrong?…

On December 2017, the African Centre for Biodiversity (ACB) hosted a National Seed Dialogue and Celebration at Constitution Hill in Johannesburg. The event brought together farmers and civil society organisations from eight provinces, as well as from across the region, to celebrate the work that small-scale farmers do as custodians of seeds, and to share […]

READ

A review of participatory plant breeding and lessons for African seed and food sovereignty movements

There is growing awareness of the unique and important role smallholder farmers around the world play in conserving, using and enhancing biodiversity. Conventional breeding has created a separation between farmers and specialised breeders. Participatory plant breeding (PPB) is a field of action developed over the past 25-30 years to overcome this separation, and reunite farmers […]

READ

Celebrating smallholder farmers and seed diversity in South Africa: Report from the national seed dialogue and celebration

On 8 and 9 December 2017 the African Centre for Biodiversity (ACB) hosted a national seed dialogue and celebration at Constitution Hill in Johannesburg. Farmer representatives from eight provinces, along with civil society organisations, academics, and officials from the Agricultural Research Council and Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) participated in cultural events and […]

READ

Art, Seed Sovereignty and Activism: Weaving New Stories

Preparing for the National Seed Dialogue and Celebration, hosted by the African Centre for Biodiversity, smallholder farmers, activists and government officials are crowded into the atrium of the Women’s Jail at Constitution Hill and a drum is beating. A performer, Simo Mpapa Majola, dressed in blankets, is praying and singing and imploring the audience. He […]

READ

Smallholder farmers score victory at international ‘Seed Treaty’ meeting

A landmark decision on the establishment of an Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group to realise farmers’ rights was recently taken by the seventh session of the Governing Body (GB7) of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGRFA; also known as the ‘Seed Treaty’). There was stiff opposition from countries from […]

READ

Seed sovereignty for Peasant Farmers in Malawi blocked by emerging national seed policy

The government of Malawi is poised to adopt a draconian National Seed Policy that blocks peasant farmers’ opportunities to secure and strengthen farmer-managed seed systems (FMSS), and which would undermine farmers’ rights and the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture, to which Malawi is a Party. An ad hoc stakeholder policy […]

READ

Seed capture in South Africa: A threat to seed freedom but the seed movement is fighting back

Simangele Siko, a member of the central committee at Izindaba Zokudla, in her thanks to ACB after the workshop said, “The farmers have got power, immense power, but you have just unearthed the power!” Who can claim to own a seed? In these kernels lie the genetic wisdom of millions of years, co-created within specific […]

READ

Local seed varieties are essential for sustainable food systems … but face challenges

Smallholder farmers in Mozambique want access to a diversity of quality seed, but not exclusively from the formal sector. Farmers highly value their own varieties and want to work on enhancing these, too. These strong messages came out of a dialogue held between smallholder farmers, government officials and research institutions in Chimoio, Manica Province in […]

READ