Brainfood: COVID & seeds, Livestock integration, Farm diversity, Diet diversity, Genetic diversity, Cassava landraces, Wild coffee, Variety registration, Kava kastom, Neolithic Europe

Brainfood: Extension, Wheat adoption, Bean ideotypes, Chilli evaluation, Rice domestication, Mungbeans from space, Biodiversity accounting, Cassava futures, Maize haplotypes, Heterosis, Cryo

Nibbles: Climate change vid, Lemongrass, Millets, GHUs, US potatoes

  1. Nice video on Future Climate for Africa.
  2. Indian forest communities diversify with lemongrass to help out with their climate change resilience.
  3. Have they tried millets, though? According to Millet Finder, millet products are taking over the world, so marketing should be no problem.
  4. If they don’t have seeds, they can get them from genebanks, via Germplasm Health Units, of course. The impact pathways of genebanks goes through GHUs.
  5. The Russet Burbank sure has had a big impact.

Nibbles: Crop loss, Soil data, CONABIO stuff, Digging dope, Ceres2030

  • There’s a series of interactive workshops to gather feedback on how to measure the Global Burden of Crop Loss. I want an initiative on the Global Burden of Crop Diversity Loss though.
  • Soil data makes its way to Google Maps.
  • CONABIO has some really excellent agrobiodiversity posters and other resources. Calabazas and amaranth are just the start, so dig away on these orphan crops and others.
  • Speaking of digging, ancient people got high. Well there’s a shocker.
  • Speaking of shockers: huge literature review says researchers should get to grips with smallholders.

The state of plants — in genebanks and out

More than 4,000 species of plants and fungi were discovered in 2019. These included six species of Allium in Europe and China, the same group as onions and garlic, 10 relatives of spinach in California and two wild relatives of cassava, which could help future-proof the staple crop eaten by 800 million people against the climate crisis.

That’s from The Guardian’s article on the release of Kew’s latest State of the World’s Plants and Fungi. Nice to see a shout-out for crop wild relatives, and indeed orphan crops. But it’s not all sweetness and light, of course.

Two in five of the world’s plant species are at risk of extinction as a result of the destruction of the natural world…

This year the report comes with a full volume of scientific publications in the journal Plant, People, Planet. That includes International collaboration between collections‐based institutes for halting biodiversity loss and unlocking the useful properties of plants and fungi, which has case studies on the CWR Project and Genesys.

International collaboration across biodiversity projects offers numerous benefits. Through the eight case studies presented we have identified the five key benefits to collaboration: (a) synergy; (b) greater efficiency; (c) sharing resources; (d) greater impact and leverage; and (e) transfer of knowledge and technologies. We remain mindful that successful collaborations are environments where trust and professional respect within and between partners flourish.

‘Nuff said.