Preserving and Expanding Agrobiodiversity

Agrobiodiversity is the totality of all living organisms vital to our food and agriculture systems. It encompasses all plants, animals, and micro-organisms used in farming and food preparation, along with their close wild relatives. For various reasons, a great deal of agrobiodiversity has been lost over the past century, and a great deal more is under threat. Eve Allen is a Fulbright scholar who recently returned from Peru where she studied the potato cultivation practices of indigenous people, with a focus on Quechua farmers who tolerate and even encourage the growth of wild potato relatives in and around their fields. Nate Kleinman is an heirloom seed farmer in South Jersey and co-founder of the Experimental Farm Network, a non-profit research organization dedicated to facilitating collaboration on sustainable agriculture research and plant breeding, with a focus on developing perennial staple crops to help in the fight against climate change.