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Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS). Combining agricultural biodiversity, resilient ecosystems, traditional farming practices and cultural identity










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    Project
    Saffron Heritage Site of Kashmir in India. GIAHS Saffron Site Report (part- 1)
    Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS)
    2012
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    One of the legacies of saffron farming practice for centuries in and around the Pampore Karewas of Kashmir in India is that this ancient farming system continues to inspire family farmers and local communities through their livelihood security that it provides for more than 17,000 farm families. Kashmiri village women contribute to this agriculture heritage site through traditional tilling to flower picking over 3,200 hectares dedicated to the legendary saffron crop cultivation at Pampore. Howev er, it has been facing grave challenges of sustainability and livelihood security with urgent need to adopt appropriate technologies, inter-alia, to address water vagaries, productivity loss and market volatilities. Thanks to GIAHS (Globally Important Agricultural Heritage System programme hosted by FAO of the UN at Rome), appropriately innovative scientific and technical approaches have been and are being tested and adopted at the pilot site for dynamically adapting to changing environment with due awareness-raising.
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    Book (stand-alone)
    Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems
    A Legacy for the Future
    2011
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    For millennia communities of farmers, herders, fishers and forest people have developed complex, diverse, and locally adapted agricultural systems. These systems have been managed with time-tested, ingenious combinations of techniques and practices that have usually led to community food security, and the conservation of natural resources and biodiversity. Agricultural heritage systems can still be found throughout the world covering about 5 million hectares, which provide a vital combination of social, cultural, ecological and economical services to humankind. These “Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems-GIAHS” have resulted not only in outstanding landscapes of aesthetic beauty, maintenance of globally significant agricultural biodiversity, resilient ecosystems and a valuable cultural heritage. Above all, these systems sustainably provide multiple goods and services, food and livelihood security for millions of poor and small farmers. The existence of numerous GIAHS aro und the world testifies to the inventiveness and ingenuity of people in their use and management of finite resources, biodiversity, ecosystem dynamics, and ingenious use of physical attributes of the landscape, codified in traditional but evolving knowledge, practices and technologies. Whether recognized or not by the scientific community, these ancestral agricultural systems constitute the foundation for contemporary and future agricultural innovations and technologies. Their cultural, ecologic al and agricultural diversity is still evident in many parts of the world, maintained as unique systems of agriculture. Through a remarkable process of co-evolution of Humankind and Nature, GIAHS have emerged over centuries of cultural and biological interactions and synergies, representing the accumulated experiences of rural peoples.
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    Sado's satoyama in harmony with Japanese crested ibisi. Template for GIAHS proposal Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS) Initiative
    Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS)
    2016
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    With their ecosystem complexity, the satoyama and the satoumi landscapes in Sado Island harbor a variety of agricultural biodiversity, such as rice, beans, vegetables, potatoes, soba, fruit, grown in paddy fields and other fields, livestock, wild plants and mushrooms in forests, and many seafood in the coastal areas. Rice, beef and persimmon from the Sado are among the best in Japan. The satoyama in Sado was also the last habitat of the wild Japanese crested ibis, a cul-turally valued bird in Ja pan that feeds on paddy fields and roost on the tall trees. The history of rice cultivation and other agricultural practices in Sado can be traced back to the Yayoi period, 1700 years ago. Over the centuries, a diversified landscape has been produced and maintained by the communities inhabiting the island, that have developed locally adapted practices for resource use and management. For example, ingenious water management practices with over 1000 irri-gation ponds to cope with a scarcity of wat er resources coupled with rapid drainage of rainwater into the sea, while creating a rich local culture of rice farming, such as Kuruma Rice Planting listed as national important intangible cultural heritage. Pressures on food production during the gold rush of the Edo period (1603-1868) led to the development of rice terraces on hill slopes, which contribute to the landscape‟s aesthetic appeal as well as to the feeding ground of Japanese crested ibis.

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