Regarding your question on biodiversity, Martina Newell-McGloughlin addressed a similar question here: http://gmoanswers.com/ask/how-biodiversity-impacted-introduction-gm-crops-are-current-set-crops-being-replace-smaller-less. Seed saving has been known to preserve genetic diversity, which is why the practice is often used to preserve plants that are on the verge of extinction, as well as heirlooms. Sad that it's come to making laws against it. Despite reports to the contrary, none of our companies sell GM seeds that are sterile. Any farmer who doesn’t want to agree to the required provisions can choose to buy another type of seed as there are many other seed varieties in the marketplace. Several states have called seed banks "illegal seed distribution centers", uprooting community food initiatives before even getting them in the ground. In America, no it is not illegal to save seeds as long as they are not for a contraband plant, or if you plan on rebranding something you already purchased to sell commercially. Answer. In agriculture and gardening, seed saving (sometimes known as brown bagging) is the practice of saving seeds or other reproductive material (e.g. Avoid collecting seeds from plants that have defects or are prone to pest or disease issues. Farmers understand this when they make the choice to purchase the seed. The enforcement of such regulations would, at the very least, undermine the purpose of community seed libraries—and at the worst, make the operation of a community seed library virtually … Like to read more content, Join the Mother Earth News Community Today. International Subscribers - Click Here The most obvious illegality comes not from sharing seeds but from splitting certain types of perennials. To save this seed to plant again the next year will violate a contract and is illegal … If you have seeds that are patented, you won't want to grow them anyway because they will be hybrid (genetically altered) and hybrid seeds will not produce the same fruit or vegetable that you took them from. After the horrific fire season of 2017, I do not want to risk someone unknowingly planting the 'pretty ornamental' anywhere around me! Canadian subscriptions: 1 year (includes postage & GST). "Life begins with the seed germinating…we depend on seed and most of the seed is the seed we will produce, have it, save and use in the next planting season. I even have pics of them together and many letters and signed books to her from him. (See below why this does not mesh with the law). tubers) from vegetables, grain, herbs, and flowers for use from year to year for annuals and nuts, tree fruits, and berries for perennials and trees. Who says your great-grandmother's heirloom tomato seeds are any less valuable? Seeds saved from plants you grow in your garden are more disease and pest resistant. Survival Skills, Garden Planning, Seed Saving, Food Preservation, Natural Health – Dozens of courses, 100+ workshops, and interactive Q&As. The seed saving itself can be done in a number of ways, and although it is quite simple it is still an art which should be done properly. Farmers who choose to grow genetically modified (GM, or GMO) seed sign a contract stating that they will not save their seed to grow next year. But surely you can give away packets of your great-grandmother's heirloom tomato seeds, right? 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. The UPOV convention has undergone many revisions, however, and since 1991, while scientific research is still allowed on PVP seed, farmers are now prohibited from saving … Vandana's Call for Seed Freedom and Free Seed Saving eBook. Regarding your second question, GM crops produce seeds just like conventional crops. You can save seed from hybrid plants or from plants that have been cross pollinated. Poland say no to Monsanto but Allows Trading of GM Seeds • Seeds won't grow after the expiration date on the package. Seed saving is also preserving blueprints of our past, the lifestyles of our ancestors and the unique flavors of the land we proudly inhabit. It amazes me that they were doing this so long ago. 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. Interesting. That's what most of the farmers in Tanzania still do… It was inherited for generations and generations." 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