Seed savers, seed librarians, and community seed projects are getting some major support from Clif Bar. The Seed Matters website recently got a major overhaul, turning the site in a valuable resource for everyone interested in saving seeds.
The homepage uses animation to tell the 12, 000-year-old story of the relationship between people and plants, and how seed came to play such an important part in transforming the world.
The Untold Story of Seeds
Did you know Thomas Jefferson smuggled seeds out of Italy by sowing seeds into the lining of his coat? Between 1819 and 1923 the American government was an important source of free seeds. Millions of seed packets were distributed to American gardeners and farmers. The free seed distribution ended in 1924 after lobbying from privately held seed companies. These are just some of the interesting facts that you’ll learn about on the new Seed Matters website.
Seedy Resources for Gardeners
There are also downloadable guides for seed saving tips, a seed saving chart, and information on how to organize seed swaps, community seed banks, and seed gardens.
There are also limited quantities of seed saving kits (pictured above) that are being made available for community seed projects. The kits include three seed screens, and 250 seed envelopes, and 50 labels for jars and other seed containers.
Advancing Farmers and Organic Seed Production
Seed Matters is an initiative of the Clif Bar Family Foundation. Through Seed Matters, they’re hoping to conserve genetic diversity, promote the role and rights of farmers as seed stewards and seed innovators, and jump start public seed research and education.
Seed Matters also recently announcement that Kara Young of OSU had been awarded Seed Matters’ organic plant breeding fellowship. The five-year, $125,000 grant will allow Young to study organic vegetable breeding under the direction of Professor James Myers. Professor Myers authored the first comprehensive textbook on plant breeding for organic agriculture.
Mathew Dillon joined the Clif Bar & Company in 2012 as their agricultural and programs manager. He’ll also be the director of Seed Matters. Dillon will serve as the company’s liaison with state and federal officials on organic policy issues. Prior to joining Clif Bar and Seed Matters, he was the founding director of the Organic Seed Alliance.
Head over to the Seed Matters website to read some of the helpful how to information, or apply for a community seed kit for your group and organization.