Food, culture, and the changing climate can all benefit from one small thing: seeds. Here’s why saving seeds is crucial.

Before the COVID-19 pandemic gripped the world, I was researching seed systems in the Andes Mountains of Peru and sitting shoulder to shoulder with my fellow students. We passed a bowl of potatoes around our circle, and I picked up a small, skinny potato with a curved hook at the end and bit into its purple skin. I had never tasted a potato with so much flavor. The humble farmer responsible for growing the potato sat to my left—and also happened to be one of the most important guardians of biodiversity in the world.

They call him El Rey de Las Papas, The Potato King, for the many Indigenous potato varieties he farms on the land next to his home.

“My grandfather gave me six varieties of potatoes,” he shared. “Now I have 350.”

Farming potatoes and saving their seeds has been a way to carry forward his ancestors’ gifts and pay tribute to the land.

Here are four reasons why you should support Indigenous seed saving:

  1. Seed saving creates stable food supplies.
  2. Seed saving improves disaster preparedness.
  3. Seed saving strengthens relationships.
  4. Seed saving preserves our cultures.

Read the full article about Indigenous seed saving by Allison Conroe at GlobalGiving.