Heritage Breeds and Heirloom Seeds

Posted June 30th, 2016 by maryalbro and filed in News & Announcements
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The 1772 Foundation recently awarded grants of $50,000 to The Livestock Conservancy (Pittsboro, NC) and $40,000 to Seed Savers Exchange (Decorah, IA).

The Livestock Conservancy (TLC) mission is to protect endangered livestock and poultry breeds from extinction. In the 20th century, traditional, historic breeds were left behind by modern agriculture, which preferred faster maturing or more productive breeds. Now rare, these historic breeds are recognized as having essential survival and self-sufficiency characteristics and as being vital to our agricultural future.

TLC will use its funds for its Discover, Secure, and Sustain Program. Initiatives under this program include breed censuses, DNA collection and analysis, importation of new genetics, farmer consultations, educational materials and workshops, collaboration with breed associations, and marketing support.

The Seed Savers Exchange (SSE) mission is to conserve and promote America’s culturally diverse but endangered garden and food crop heritage for future generations by collecting, growing, and sharing heirloom seeds and plants.

SSE will use its funds for its Legacy Donors Project. This initiative will document and share the personal accounts of individuals who have made major contributions to its seed collection of heirloom garden crop varieties. Putting a variety in historical context is important in order to learn about its best attributes, which can’t be determined just by looking at its seed. SSE puts it this way, “A seed’s story is the voucher that it is worth being grown, saved, and shared.” SSE’s historians expect to complete documentation of between 200 to 500 varieties in the collection.

The aptly named, Large Black Pig

The aptly named, Large Black Pig

Heirloom beans

Heirloom beans