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"Seeds for Needs": un projet mobilisant les techniques modernes de GPS pour localiser les banques locales de ressources génétiques les plus prometteuses

Bioversity International : The "Seeds for Needs" project

Climate change will drastically affect food security for people around the world, and there is little time to prepare. Farmers will need new varieties and even new crops to ensure that their growing systems remain productive.

But among the myriad accessions held in trust for the global community by the genebanks of the Centers supported by the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (650,000 and counting), just how do we find the most valuable ones to meet farmers’ future needs ?

Part of Bioversity International’s answer is Seeds for Needs, a project to steal a march on climate change by pre-selecting crops and varieties that are likely to perform well under future conditions.

Location coordinates — latitude and longitude — for where the accessions were collected are taken as a reasonable proxy for the growing conditions that suit those accessions. Plugging that information into geographical information systems can help to identify accessions already adapted to future growing conditions elsewhere in the world.

But the selected varieties still need to be tested, and this is where Seeds for Needs has already scored. A US$200,000 proposal to fund work with women farmers in Ethiopia was named a winner in the World Bank’s recent Development Marketplace 2009, marking Bioversity’s second straight success in this important competition for innovative solutions. Ehsan Dulloo, the Bioversity scientist who leads the partnership with the Institute of Biodiversity Conservation in Addis Ababa, says that in Ethiopia women are the custodians of seeds and diversity.

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Source : Bioversity International,

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Crédits: AK-Project