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Realizing farmers’ rights through community-based agricultural biodiversity management

Evelyn Clancy and Ronnie Vernooy (2016):
Realizing farmers’ rights through community-based agricultural biodiversity management
Policy Paper, Bioversity International, 2016


Article 9 of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture addresses farmers’ rights and recognizes the crucial role that smallholder farmers collectively play in maintaining the global pool of plant genetic resources. Strengthening and supporting women and men smallholder farmers and their communities to manage agricultural biodiversity effectively promotes food and seed security, sustainable livelihoods and resilience. This is best achieved through a community-based approach that is responsive to local conditions and builds on traditional knowledge and practices of farming communities. Such approach can be put into practice through research on: identifying and rewarding custodian farmers, encouraging farmer research groups (e.g. farmer biodiversity schools), establishing and supporting community seedbanks, promoting neglected and underutilized native crops and species, promoting nutritional value of crop diversity, using crop diversity for pest and disease management, supporting farmer seed producer- and marketing enterprises, organizing seed and food diversity fairs and festivals, and strengthening smallholder seed systems through the development and implementation of policy and legal measures. It is through these multiple actions that farmers’ rights can be realized as a real means to empower smallholder farmers and their communities. Examples of Bioversity International’s research portfolio provide evidence.
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 In this section:
  A summary of the literature on Farmers' Rights
  Major works on Farmers' Rights – global level
  Articles and book chapters on Farmers' Rights – global level
  Major works and articles on farmers' rights – regional and national levels
  Other literature of relevance for Farmers' Rights

Nepal. Photo: Regine Andersen, FNI

Page last updated 20 September 2012