- China announces a slew of seed-related measures.
- A slew of seeds kept apples diverse in the US South, but not so much any more.
- Fortunately there’s a slew of apples, among many other things, in the USDA genebank system.
- Dates too, probably, but this article is actually about the (complementary?) collection at Arizona State University.
- A slew of intellectual protections has been good for seed companies. But consumers?
- IFG no doubts benefits mightily from intellectual property protection of its grape varieties. The diversity of which you can peruse on this nice website.
- Speaking of nice websites, this one helps farmers pick-a-mix of crops. Intercropping is diversity too.
- How the coffee industry is trying to cope with a slew of sustainability rules. Yeah, sometimes IP protection is not enough.
- But who owns heritage varieties?
- Including heritage varieties of Belgian malting barley and other cereals.
- Speaking of malting, they use sorghum in Tanzania.
- It’s unclear what heritage varieties went into making horse-bread, but I’d like to taste the stuff.
- But who needs bread (or beer?) anyway? There’s a slew of root and tuber crops in Africa and elsewhere just waiting to solve hunger…
- …as Guyana knows well.
- Wanna keep track of (most of) the above? FAO has you (sorta) covered via a slew of indicators.
- Biodiversity: Concepts, Patterns, Trends, and Perspectives. It may not be the sixth mass extinction, but it’s still bad, and we’re to blame. Interestingly for such a high-level review, genetic diversity of domesticated species is actually mentioned.
- Seeds of knowledge: paving the way to integrated historical and conservation science research. Conserving the genetic diversity of domesticated species needs to combine history and science.
- Maize and precolonial Africa. Maize contributed to slavery. History indeed.
- Agriculture in the Ancient Maya Lowlands (Part 1): Paleoethnobotanical Residues and New Perspectives on Plant Management. There was more diversity than formerly thought, at various levels. So not just history, but archaeology as well?
- Current agricultural diversification strategies are already agroecological. Ancient Maya Lowland agriculture sounds very agroecological.
- Earliest curry in Southeast Asia and the global spice trade 2000 years ago. Yes, definitely archaeology is needed too.
- Co-conserving Indigenous and local knowledge systems with seeds. Conserving the genetic diversity of domesticated species needs to combine traditional knowledge and seeds.
- Culture and agricultural biodiversity conservation. Conserving the genetic diversity of domesticated species needs to combine culture and policy.
- What plant breeding may (and may not) look like in 2050? Using the genetic diversity of domesticated species needs to increase selection intensity. Citizen science to the rescue?
- Conventional breeding of Pacific Island staple crops: A paradox. Using the genetic diversity of domesticated species needs to increase in the Pacific. And fast.
- Unlocking the inherent potential of plant genetic resources: food security and climate adaptation strategy in Fiji and the Pacific. Maybe selection intensity is not the thing in the Pacific.
- What Can Be Learned by a Synoptic Review of Plant Disease Epidemics and Outbreaks Published in 2021? Using the genetic diversity of domesticated species needs to increase. Very fast.
- Apulian Autochthonous Olive Germplasm: A Promising Resource to Restore Cultivation in Xylella fastidiosa-Infected Areas. Using the genetic diversity of domesticated species is increasing.
- Why heirloom seeds matter.
- Why genebanks full of heirloom seeds matter. Even to kids.
- Why community seedbanks full of heirloom seeds matter.
- Just how much agrobiodiversity matters, according to FAO.
- Why heirloom seeds of neglected crops matter.
- Why heirloom seeds of sorghum matter in Kenya. No, really.
- Why heirloom grapes matter in Italy.
- Why seeds of wild tomatoes matter.
- Even wild sheep matter.
- Why visualizing coffee diversity matters.
- Why watermelons mattered in the 17th century.
- Why bottle gourds mattered to Koreans.
- Why farmers’ rights matter.
- Comparing delivery channels to promote nutrition-sensitive agriculture: A cluster-randomized controlled trial in Bangladesh. When it comes to delivering nutrition info jointly to husbands and wives, female nutrition workers and male extension workers are about equally good. But mothers-in-law don’t help in either case.
- Levelling foods for priority micronutrient value can provide more meaningful environmental footprint comparisons. From a Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) of the environmental impact of different foods to a nutritional Life Cycle Assessment (nLCA). Maybe mothers-in-law should calculate it.
- Policy-induced expansion of organic farmland: implications for food prices and welfare. Raising the organic cropland share in rich countries from 3-15% increases food prices in poor countries by about 2% on average for 4 major grains and oilseeds. No word on what the LCA and nLCA looks like.
- Cheese consumption and multiple health outcomes: an umbrella review and updated meta-analysis of prospective studies. Cheese is moderately good for you. I wonder which micronutrients are involved.
- Ownership of small livestock species, but not aggregate livestock, is associated with an increased risk of anemia among children in Ethiopia: A propensity score matching analysis. Poultry was associated with lower anemia risk, sheep and goats with higher risk. No word on whether cheese was involved.
- Women’s empowerment, production choices, and crop diversity in Burkina Faso, India, Malawi, and Tanzania: a secondary analysis of cross-sectional data. Women on more diverse farms had more power. No word on how many of them were mothers-in-law.
- The Role of Home Gardens in Promoting Biodiversity and Food Security. Mothers-in-law and homegardens would be one hell of a study.
- The ultra-processed food industry in Africa. It should be treated like the tobacco or alcohol industry. Maybe put mothers-in-law in charge of regulating it?
- Exploring genetic variability, heritability, and trait correlations in gari and eba quality from diverse cassava varieties in Nigeria. Just a reminder that there may be genetic diversity in all the above nutritional type stuff. Which the ultra-processed food industry is probably ignoring, but mothers-in-law are not.
Our friends at World Agroforestry (the centre formerly known as ICRAF) have been very busy with their data wrangling in support of policy recommendations. So much so, in fact, that it may be getting complicated for outsiders to keep all their information products straight, so here’s a quick recap.
Let’s start with the premise that we need more trees. I don’t think anyone disputes that. The problem, as has been repeated many times now, is to have the right trees in the right places. That starts with the right seeds, of course. In a recent paper, World Agroforestry scientists and partners suggest that what we need for that is more transparency (and accountability) about where those seeds will be coming from.
But which species should be sourced? That’s where GlobalUsefulNativeTrees comes in. As described in another recent paper, this has data on “14,014 tree species that can be filtered for ten major use categories, across 242 countries and territories.” So if you want to know what trees can be used as animal food in tropical montane Kenya, say, this will tell you. The answer is Prunus africana, by the way.
Ah, but you may be worried about how the trees you have selected to plant (or indeed have already been planted) will do under climate change. Fear not, World Agroforestry again has you covered with TreeGOER. That has data on the climatic preferences of 48,129 tree species, and their likely vulnerability as the climate changes. The results may well send you back to GlobalUsefulNativeTrees for a rethink.
Hope that clarifies the tree data landscape a bit. Looking forward to other use cases from readers.
LATER: Oh, and there’s also a climate change atlas.