Farmers' Rights
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Why Farmers' Rights matter

Farmers' Rights are a precondition for the maintenance of crop genetic diversity, which is the basis of all food and agriculture production in the world. Genetic diversity of agricultural plants is the very basis of farming.

It provides the pool from which plant traits can be found that meet the challenges of crop pests and diseases, of marginal soils, and – not least – of changing climate conditions and it is vital for spreading risks for smallholder farmers.

Plant genetic diversity is probably more important for farming than any other environmental factor, simply because it is the factor that enables adaptation to changing environmental conditions. As farmers are custodians and developers of crop genetic resources, their rights in this regard are crucial for enabling them to maintain this vital role for local and global food security, and they are a central means in the fight against poverty.

Read more:
   The agricultural biodiversity argument
   The poverty eradication argument
   Farmers' realities as context

Relevant links and documents:
 FAO Report: State of the World's Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture
 Global Crop Diversity Trust
 Key Barriers to the Realization of Farmers' Rights
 UN Millennium Development Goals
 CSO approaches to Farmers' Rights
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 In this section:
  Farmers' Rights in the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture
  Why Farmers' Rights matter
  The contents of Farmers' Rights
  History of Farmers' Rights in the FAO
  Farmers' Rights in the literature
  Civil Society Organizations' approaches to Farmers' Rights

Photo: G. Ulutuncok