16 Aug farmers markets in the sun
I happened across some farmers markets this morning. It was a beautiful day, and the park was filled with stall after stall of locally grown produce.
Organic honey, local coriander and kale, local lemons and oranges, and best organisation of all – the seed savers. The idea is that the seed savers are a ‘bank’ of edible plant seeds, which only stays fresh if the members grow the plants and eat them.
They learn and teach how to save, sort, dry, share, store, and distribute seeds. The seeds that are saved are more suited to the local climate, because they were saved from prosperous plants that grew in the region. Furthermore, selecting seeds from the best plants that are grown in the region, the group selects seeds that promote strains best suited to our climate and conditions.
Local seed networks act against the homogenisation of food crop diversity, and increase the genetic base of food crops. This is important because food variety is decreasing, and in the past century 75 % of garden varieties disappeared because people stopped growing and collecting their own plants and seeds.
The world’s food
As mentioned earlier on this blog about five multinational companies control food production worldwide, and about five companies control 40 % of the seed that is grown worldwide. Apart from sometimes being protected intellectually, or with built in obsolescence, these seeds are often genetically modified as well.
These sorts of practices reduce the level of biodiversity in our food crops, through use of seeds grown in non local conditions, and often patented by large companies.
It sounds like a lot of fun. This group gets together regularly to share cuttings of plants as well. Perhaps it would be a good activity to get involved in!
Today though, I bought a bunch of local organic kale 🙂 Yum. And an organic sausage sandwich. I know it was a bit early in the day to eat meat, but I couldn’t go past trying organic sausages that are gluten and preservative free on the most amazing stone ground bread with tomato relish. It was delicious!
It makes such perfect sense that seeds that have proliferated in plants in this local area would make viable seeds for growing more food crops, and it is something to plan for a balcony garden!