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First International Multi-Stakeholder Symposium on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture. AGENDA

Technical Consultation on in situ conservation and on-farm management of PGRFA 29–30 March 2021















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    Brochure, flyer, fact-sheet
    First International Multi-stakeholder Symposium on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture
    information note - Technical Consultation on in situ conservation and on-farm management of PGRFA
    2021
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    The challenge of sustainably producing more food with fewer inputs may be met only if the broadest possible diversity of plant genetic resources for food and agricultural (PGRFA) can be efficiently conserved and easily accessed for sources of new traits. Currently, various drivers of genetic erosion, including changes in agricultural practices, the introduction of modern crop varieties, changes in land use, destruction or fragmentation of habitats, climate change and other factors, are increasingly threatening the continued existence, and hence availability, of these resources. A significant amount of crop diversity can only be effectively preserved in protected areas and farmers’ fields where evolution and adaptation continue to occur. This variation, derived from interactions between genotypes and the environment, provides a crucial source of environmental resilience as well as an important source of nutrients. Crop wild relatives (CWR) represent a rich and largely unexplored reservoir of novel traits and genes that can be used to develop crop varieties, incorporating pest and disease resistance and adapted to climate change. Wild food plants can be direct and important sources of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients, complementing those of staple crops. PGRFA found on-farm, including farmers’ varieties/landraces, often the mainstay of family’s livelihoods, and are adapted to specific ecological conditions and/or farming practices. Failure to ensure adequate conservation and management of this critically important diversity may result in its permanent loss.
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    Book (stand-alone)
    Proceedings of the First International Multi-Stakeholder Symposium on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture: Technical consultation on in situ conservation and on-farm management of plant genetic resources for food and agriculture
    29–30 March 2021, Rome, Italy
    2022
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    This book represents the proceedings of the First International Multi-stakeholder Symposium on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture: Technical Consultation on in situ conservation and on-farm management of PGRFA, held virtually on 29 and 30 March 2021. The proceedings provide a record of the Symposium, including the opening and welcome addresses and the four sessions: 1) challenges and opportunities for sustainably managing crop diversity; 2) in situ conservation of crop wild relatives and wild food plants; 3) on-farm management of farmers’ varieties/landraces; and, 4) creating communities of practice. The Symposium highlighted the current state of knowledge and the enabling environment for in situ conservation and on-farm management of PGRFA. It contributed to an increased understanding of the role and importance of in situ conservation of crop wild relatives and wild food plants, and on-farm management of farmers’ varieties/landraces. The Symposium provided a forum for the exchange of information and experiences among experts, practitioners and other stakeholders.
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    Book (stand-alone)
    Voluntary Guidelines for the Conservation and Sustainable Use of Farmers' Varieties/Landraces 2019
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    The cultivation of diverse farmers’ varieties/landraces, which tend to be well-adapted and suited to local production systems, confers increased resilience for crop production. Farmers’ varieties/landraces are also potential sources of traits for crop improvement, especially for developing varieties tolerant to biotic and abiotic stresses and for incorporating farmer-preferred traits. Unfortunately, many of these genetic resources have been replaced by modern cultivars in recent decades, resulting in a reduction in the total number of different varieties grown and/or loss of heterogeneity. Such losses make farming systems less resilient, especially to shocks from abiotic and biotic stresses. These guidelines, intended as reference materials for preparing a National Plan for the Conservation and Sustainable Use of Farmers’ Varieties/Landraces, will contribute to addressing this continuing loss of diversity. The guidelines are therefore a useful tool for development practitioners, researchers, students and policymakers who work on the conservation and sustainable use of these valuable resources.

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