Date Posted: February 4th, 2008
This story describes the vital role of small-scale women traders in ensuring that Malian famers have access to locally-adapted seeds in case of crop failure. But as this story describes, purchasing seeds is often a last resort for farmers. There are many ways in which farmers ensure their access to all-important seeds, including storing and protecting some of their own grain. Some communities also collaborate to ensure access to seeds, sometimes with community seed banks.
Over the years, DCFRN has published several scripts that describe ways in which African farmers safeguard their access to seeds. You may wish to share one or more of these scripts with your audience:
-A Local Plant Prevents Pest Damage to Stored Seeds (Package 81, Script 1,
-Storing Cowpea Seeds for a Season and a Reason (Package 79, Script 8,
-Save your Own Seeds, Part One: Seed Selection, Part Two: Seed Storage (Package 42, Script 1 and 2, October 1996)
You may also wish to research a local story on how farmers in your area save and protect their seeds. You might focus your research on questions such as:
-What methods do farmers use to protect their seed supplies from pest damage?
-What sources do farmers use when their personal seed supplies have been depleted?
If you develop a local story, we would love to share it with the FRW community! Please e-mail FRW Editor Heather Miller for details about submitting a news story, at firstname.lastname@example.org.