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How seed laws make farmers’ seeds illegal. Mr. Parr was featured in a documentary, Food, Inc. In 2013, Eden graduated from Ohio University’s Honors Tutorial College with a B.S. However, supervisory agencies view the informal and unregulated nature of community seed libraries as a potential threat to the security of the food system. Already a Member? Her background includes studies in systems theory, human geography, permaculture, soil ecology, anthropology, plant biology, development studies, and social theory. All donations are tax deductible. Edit: Saving seeds is not illegal. Seed library defenders are reviewing the legal language to find loopholes that would permit seed libraries to function. These are laws if I ever saw them, that need and beg to be flouted. In some cases, like Pennsylvania Seed Act, this language does not address non-commercial distribution of seeds. You are forced into buying seed when it runs out. in Environmental and Plant Biology, a minor in Anthropology, and an Environmental Studies certificate. But surely you can give away packets of your great-grandmother's heirloom tomato seeds, right? In … Here are some snippets: It turns a human right (to grow food and share it) into a government-authorised privilege that can be summarily revoked. You can usually tell if a variety you're buying is patented because it'll cost a little more than similar heirloom varieties and will likely mention the patent right there in the nursery catalog. Planning And Planting A Moon Garden E-Handbook, Growing The Best Raspberries And Blackberries E-Handbook, Natural Cold Storage: Fresh Food in Winter, Keeping Crops Cool During Hot Weather: 13 Ways to Beat the Heat, Subscribe Today - Pay Now & Save 64% Off the Cover Price. At MOTHER EARTH NEWS for 50 years and counting, we are dedicated to conserving our planet's natural resources while helping you conserve your financial resources. But just saving them as you first said in your post is not illegal, they can't really stop you if you aren't profiting from it. Seed libraries are often part of initiatives to promote community gardening and local food systems. Register now to get access to ALL current video workshops and prerecorded webinars plus anything new that we add through the end of 2020. Sign in with your online account. Lobby for your state to update their laws to match the Recommended Uniform State Seed Law (RUSSL), which allows seed swaps, seed libraries, and seed banks while still protecting the economic system that makes the production of new varieties viable. While I agree that the laws need to be updated to match the RUSSL, I believe the biggest danger is from people not knowing what potential weeds and invasive plants that may be spread to another location. Some supporters contend that policymakers did not intend state seed laws to govern informal, non-commercial exchanges of seeds between members of a community. – By controlling seeds, the bill takes the power to grow food away from the public and puts it in the hands of seed companies. Her research focuses on agricultural change, food sovereignty, and food movements as viewed through the lenses of postmodern social theory. The penalty for violating this ridiculous law is a fine of up to $7,500 a day. I have many letters and signed books that he sent her. And while the sheriff likely won't be patrolling seed swaps in search of repeat offenders, this issue is a hurdle for homesteaders who might want to turn that unique variety they saved or developed into a microbusiness. Rather than imposing laws that uproot the age-old practice of seed … Growing them and selling them or just selling the seeds probably is if it's a specially developed seed. While many contain certain requirements for regulation of seeds, the language (and applicability) of these requirements varies. Seed-preemption laws have been adopted in 29 states, including Oregon — one of the world’s top five seed-producing regions — California, Iowa, and Colorado. account? If the breeder stops production for any reason you are stuck. Canadian Subscribers - Click Here Wrong. How seed laws make farmers’ seeds illegal Wrong! Like so many other senseless laws, this rule needs to be put to rest. Monsanto has been notoriously aggressive about going after those who, like Bowman, failed to heed that agreement. The displacement of peasant seeds is a process that has been gaining ground and speed around the world over the past decades. In fact this is so irritating to my non-conformist, individualistic American soul that I think I'd PREFER to break these laws rather than change them. She spent ten months at Navdanya’s Bija Vidyapeeth – a model organic farm, learning community, and biodiversity conservation center – learning about farmers’ experiences of agricultural change. Canadian subscriptions: 1 year (includes postage & GST). After the horrific fire season of 2017, I do not want to risk someone unknowingly planting the 'pretty ornamental' anywhere around me! A place where gardening, eating the fruit of your labours, and saving your seeds is illegal is some kind of bad, B-rated, Orwellian science fiction movie. An example is that of Scotch Broom. The case was settled and in exchange for paying no monetary damages, Parr agreed to an injunction requiring Parr to obtain certification from his clients that their seeds were not Monsanto patented seeds and to advise clients that seed saving of patented seeds is illegal. Food Tank is focused on building a global community for safe, healthy, nourished eaters. Eden currently serves on the Scientific Advisory Board of the Hummingbird project, an international nonprofit organization committed to promoting heirloom seeds, healthy soils, and vibrant communities. If the seeds are small, cut the plant off with scissors and shake the seeds into a container to collect them. You cannot seed save and produce your own plants. Seed libraries, initiatives that allow gardeners to share seeds with others in their community, have steadily gained popularity in the United States, with more than 400 seed libraries currently documented. Who says your great-grandmother's heirloom tomato seeds are any less valuable? My great aunt used to seed swap with people from all over the world, including China, Russia and Mexico. don't have an online One of these rules, seed testing, may prove a serious obstacle for seed libraries: organizations simply may not have enough seeds of a given variety to satisfy the sample size required for testing. Overall, if you want to experiment with seed saving it could be an interesting project, but unless you know that have reliable varieties, we wouldn’t stake your whole garden on it. Edit: Saving seeds is not illegal. It is illegal to save GM seeds and these companies employ the "Seed Police" to spy on farmers to make sure that they are towing the line.

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