Fewer crop species are feeding the world than 50 years ago - raising concerns about the resilience of the global food system, a study has shown.
The authors warned a loss of diversity meant more people were dependent on key crops, leaving them more exposed to harvest failures.
Higher consumption of energy-dense crops could also contribute to a global rise in heart disease and diabetes, they added.
The findings appear in PNAS journal.
The world’s agribusiness corporations are pursuing their attempts to privatize and monopolize our seeds. Behind their efforts is a clear goal: to make the age-old practice of saving and breeding seeds into a crime and gain monopoly control over seeds. Latin America has not escaped these attacks.
It is a statistic that is hard to deny: industrial forms of agriculture, with emphasis on large-scale monoculture crop production, have a negative impact on biodiversity. The Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations, referring to the scale of the loss as “extensive,” found that some 75 percent of plant genetic diversity has been lost since 1900 as farmers turn to genetically uniform, mass-produced crop varieties.
saving seeds is a noble enterprise especially in this day and age of rapidly declining biodiversity and increased reliance on monocrops
Saving seeds has been a noble enterprise for centuries and has taken on greater significance in food production in this day and age of rapidly declining biodiversity, increased climate pressure and reliance on monocrops.
As National Geographic reported last July:
MELONS NOW A MONSANTO ”INVENTION”
US corporation awarded a European patent on conventionally bred melons.
Recent research conducted by the coalition No Patents on Seeds! shows that in May 2011, the US corporation Monsanto was awarded a European patent on conventionally bred melons (EP 1 962 578). Melons have a natural resistance to certain plant viruses. It is especially evident in melons grown in India. Using conventional breeding methods, this type of resistance was introduced to other melons and has now been patented as a Monsanto ”invention”.