12 January 2017

Open Source Seeds: protecting biodiversity

Sounds absurd, isn’t it? Open Source Seeds? Well it’s not. According to the farmers responsible for the OSSI ( Open Source Seed Initiative ) “today, only a handful of companies account for most of the world’s commercial breeding and seed sales. Increasingly, patenting and restrictive contracts are used to enhance the power and control of these companies over the seeds and the farmers that feed the world. Patented and protected seeds cannot be saved, replanted, or shared by farmers and gardeners…”. This business model, which in other sectors would make a lot of sense (Product of Service instead of consumer products for electronics’), in a live environment is especially dangerous.
Natural systems have the ability to adapt, self-regulate, and regenerate when allowed to act freely. Current agricultural practices are so far away from this that they generate the opposite effect (affecting soil and water quality) and put biodiversity and food availability at risk in the medium and long term.
OSSI is committed to protecting the largest possible number of seeds from these abusive practices, engaging farmers and gardeners from around the world willing to protect their varieties from legal restrictions now and in the future.
In the US they have already formalized some alliances with companies that bring their product to market, such as Good Earth Natural Foods (California), whose recipes include vegetables from seeds protected by OSSI-Pledge, showing the organization’s logo.
We hope this initiative that was born just two years ago can grow around the planet and reverse the current trends. It is not only a matter of protecting biodiversity but protecting the right of access to food production and consumption worldwide.