Global Crop Diversity TrustPresentation Transcript
A FOUNDATION FORFOOD SECURITYOne seed at a time, protecting the future of food
CaryFowler, ExecutiveDirector Global CropDiversity TrustFormer Professor andDirector of Research inthe Department forInternationalEnvironment &Development Studies atthe Norwegian Universityof Life Sciences, Dr.Fowler served as SeniorAdvisor to the DirectorGeneral of BioversityInternational. Herepresented theConsultative Group onInternational AgriculturalResearch (CGIAR) innegotiations on theInternational Treaty onPlant Genetic Resourcesfor Food and Agriculture.
The fight against hunger is one of thegreatest challenges facing theworld over the coming decades.Crop diversity is fundamental todefeating hunger and achievingfood security and sustainability…and sustainability is at risk!
Sustainability is based on a simpleprinciple: Everything that we need forour survival and well-being depends onour natural environment. Sustainability creates and maintains theconditions where humans & nature canexist in harmony while fulfilling thesocial, economic and otherrequirements of present and futuregenerations.
But, the varieties of wheat, corn and ricewe grow today may not thrive in afuture threatened by climate change…
There are 35,000 to 40,000 varieties of beansalone!Each variety is valuable.
What is cropdiversity?Agriculture dependson relatively fewcrops - only about150 are cultivated toany substantialdegree worldwide -but, each comes in avast variety ofdistinctive formssuch asheight, flowercolor, branchingpattern, fruitingtime, seed size, orflavor.
Simply put, crop diversity is the biological base of allagriculture. Its use goes back to the origins offarming, and farmers and scientists must continuallydraw on this irreplaceable resource to ensureproductive harvests.
The Trust aims to ensure the conservation of thediversity within all crops of importance to foodsecurity. The Trust will give priority to the crops includedin the International Treaty on Plant GeneticResources for Food and Agriculture - the cropsthat have been selected as the most important forfood security and interdependence
Nearly every major US food or fiber crop isbattling pests and diseases against which ithas no resistance. For all of these crops, the difference betweendevastation and resilience may be found incrop diversity collections around the world. Crop gene banks store samples of crops andtheir thousands of varieties.
The Global Crop Diversity Trusts answer is to raise anendowment - the interest is enough to guarantee thesuccessful preservation (and the ready availability tothose who need it) - of the biological basis of allagriculture. This will ensure that the conservation of thismost crucial resource is placed forever on a firmfoundation.In addition to the Trusts action is an internationalagreement on the importance of this issue. Nations aroundthe world have adopted a number of internationalcovenants that recognize the need for conserving cropdiversity as well as confirming the important role ofcollections sustained in gene banks.
The Global Crop Diversity Trust wasfounded by the United Nations Food andAgriculture Organization (FAO) andBioversity International, acting on behalf ofthe top international research organizationsin this field (CGIAR).The Trust is currently hosted in Rome by FAO.Visit their websites:
Cary Fowler: One seed at a time, protecting the future of foodhttp://www.ted.com/talks/cary_fowler_one_seed_at_a_time_protecting_the_future_of_food.htmlEPA - What is sustainability? Retrieved 10/7/11http://www.epa.gov/sustainability/basicinfo.htmGlobal Crop Diversity Trust 2010 Annual Report, Retrieved 10/8/11http://issuu.com/croptrust/docs/annualreport2010?mode=embed&layout=http%3A%2F%2Fskin.issuu.com%2Fv%2Flight%2Flayout.xml&showFlipBtn=trueGlobal Crop Diversity Trust – Crop Diversity, Retrieved 10/8/11http://www.croptrust.org/main/ldiversity.phpGrover, S. (2008) Global Crop Diversity Trust: The Search for Climate ProofFood, Treehugger-A Discovery Company, Retrieved 10/9/11http://www.treehugger.com/files/2008/09/crop-diversity-climate-change.php