by Chitrangada Choudhury and Aniket Aga
This story explains the devastating and dangerous impact of shifting from indigenous seeds to genetically-modified Bt cotton. It traces the history of Bt cotton in Odisha to understand the human, social, ecological and legal consequences of this shift.
by Sweta Daga
In Ghati village near Udaipur, Chamnibai Meena has been saving local seeds and preserving indigenous knowledge since she was a little girl. “Women save seeds better. They care for them, and remember to replenish them,” she said, adding, “They are the most important part of a farmer’s life.” A photo-story with all the details of the process.
by Manjula Masthikatte
Syed Ghani Khan, a paddy farmer in Mandya, Karnataka, cultivates only indigenous varieties using organic methods. He has collected 700 indigenous paddy varieties from all over India, engaging in a sort of barter system with farmers from Chhattisgarh, Kerala, Maharashtra, Odisha, Punjab, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal.
by Harinath Rao Nagulavancha
Kamala Pujhari shows us the process of seed conservation – an uphill task when many varieties of paddy in her village have vanished. Kamala, who is in her late 60s and from the Bhumia Adivasi community, received the Padma Shri in recognition of her work in 2019.
by Chitrangada Choudhury
Once upon a time India was estimated to have over 70,000 rice land races (varieties) Today, 75 per cent of India’s rice production comes from less than 10 varieties - aggressively pushed, input-intensive hybrids. But at least one farmer in Rayagada, Odisha, is working against this devastating and irreversible genetic erosion from India’s agricultural fields - Debal Deb’s seed conservation bank is home to over 1000 varieties of rice which he actively propagates and shares.
by Afsar Jafri
A nation’s agriculture is as strong as its seed system. Seeds store the keys to bio-diversity and resilience to climate change, are repositories of cultural knowledge, reflect historical breeding practices, and symbolise food security, says this 2018-report.