Monday, 16 January 2017 00:00

ICYMI Monday | Grandpotatoes, Criminalizing Seed Saving in Tanzania, and more

ICYMI Monday is USC Canada's weekly roundup of food, agriculture and policy news from here at home and around the world.

Every Monday, we serve up a selection of the news that's fit to eat, with special attention to stories related to seeds, small-scale farmers, food sovereignty and agroecology. Got a suggestion? Email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

USC Canada - In case you missed it monday - Photo: Peter Wilf, Penn State - words superimposed over an image of two flatted, papery looking tomatillo-type fruits. They are both very brown and dry.

The Big Picture

Only agricultural diversity can ensure food security and resilience and we must protect it, say Olivier De Schutter, former UN special rapporteur on the right to food, and Emile Frison the lead author of the first major report from iPES-Food. Meanwhile, business as usual agriculture is cultivating climate change. | The Guardian

Smallholder farms in the developing world produce more than half the planet's food calories, as shown in new research. | ILRI Clippings

Around the World

Tanzanian farmers are facing heavy prison sentences if they continue their traditional seed exchange. And in a country where 80 per cent of seeds are sold and shared in an informal system, that's a lot of newly minted criminal activity. | GRAIN

A farmer in India reduced his paddy's water consumption while increasing yield by using natural practices and increasing biodiversity. | The Hindu

A really extra old relative of potatoes and tomatoes was discovered in Patagonia - a great-great-great grandpotato (the full paper is available in Science to AAAS subscribers only). | Science Alert

When imports of seeds, fertilizers and other conventional farming inputs stopped abruptly in the 1990s, Cuba began a dramatic farming transition. Farmers switched from growing export commodities to growing food for local people, working with nature: agroecology. | Greenpeace

Rockland, Maine is the first city in the state to attempt declaring food sovereignty. The ordinance, if passed, would focus on direct sales between the grower and consumer, not sales to restaurants or food stores. | Bangor Daily News

In Canada

Development and Peace and USC Canada are asking the Canadian government to be a true leader in the fight against climate change and to financially support small-scale ecological agriculture practised by hundreds of millions of small-holders farmers. | The Hill Times

Indigenous groups in northern Ontario are fighting to protect their home - and food sovereignty. | The Globe and Mail

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Read 1426 times Last modified on Monday, 16 January 2017 22:26

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We’re called USC Canada because we started out way back in 1945 as the Unitarian Service Committee, founded by the energetic Dr. Lotta Hitschmanova. We’re still planting the seeds that Lotta sowed. Find out more about our founder, Dr. Lotta Hitschmanova.



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