Brainfood: Food biodiversity, Diversification, New crops, GMO maize, African livestock, Greek innovation clusters, Amazonian native cacao

Nibbles: Spanish wine, Wild bananas, African tree seeds, Ancient Foodways, Coffee genotyping, Barbados genebank, Modern plant breeding myths, Yam seeds, Climate funding for food systems

  1. There’s a piece in The Guardian on how Spanish wine makers are fighting climate change by going back to old grape varieties like estaladiña.
  2. Maybe the same will happen with bananas, and its wild relatives could help? If so, it’s good we have this nifty catalogue.
  3. A pan-African tree seed platform is in the making, thanks to CIFOR-ICRAF and IKI funding. Where’s the catalogue?
  4. Here’s a video from the University of Wisconsin-Madison on A New Way of Teaching Ancient Foodways.
  5. And a video from USDA on their work on genotyping coffee collections.
  6. Meanwhile, Barbados is still thinking about building a genebank.
  7. The Genetic Literacy Project does some myth-busting (or tries to): have modern varieties decreased the diversity within crops, are contemporary plant varieties really not suitable for low-input farming, and is improving agricultural practices enough without plant breeding? Take a wild guess.
  8. Yam researchers in Benin have their own take on improving agricultural practices.
  9. More climate funding should go to food system transformation, says the Global Alliance for the Future of Food in a report. Those Spanish winemakers — and everyone else above — would probably agree.

Brainfood: Cryo at CIP, Cryo everywhere, Citrus conservation, Seed storage, Pollen double

Nibbles: Genebanks in Japan, India, SADC, China, Sustainable nutrition security

  1. Another recent article in the mainstream media about the Japanese genebank. Not entirely sure why, but let’s not look a gift horse etc etc. Couple nice examples of re-introduction of lost diversity to farmers.
  2. And here’s the mainstream media in India (and the PM, no less) singing the praises of a farmer custodian of millet diversity.
  3. The mainstream media in Zimbabwe doesn’t want to be left behind and jumps on the genebank bandwagon too with a piece about the SADC Plant Genetic Resources Centre.
  4. Yes, silkworms need a genebank too, and China is all over it.
  5. The Union of Concerned Scientists wants a new definition of food security and genebanks could probably help with that.

Brainfood: Why measure genetic diversity?