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Found these in an up-market curio shop in Nairobi’s Yaya Centre shopping centre. I’ve never come across Wild Living before, but they sound like an interesting outfit, doing some serious value addition to local products by the look of it:

From Baobab and Shea to Leleshwa and Acacia frankinsense forest oils, East Africa, the cradle of mankind, hosts a remarkable diversity of unique natural resources that have provided succour and health during the majority of our evolution.

Whilst traditionally used, the natural benefits of these products, have until now, been unavailable to the global market. Furthermore, Africa’s potential to produce conservation and livelihoods products for its own development has remained unclaimed.

Wild Living realizes this potential by providing a market for over twenty community based projects located throughout East Africa who are being assisted by partner organizations such as WWF and OXFAM to sustainably and ethically produce natural products.

Wild Living publicises the conservation and livelihoods benefits of each of these producers products and through increased sales revenue assists them to continue conserving their unique natural resources whilst building their own lives in a dignified and self-sufficient manner.

Revenues realized by Wild Living through the sale of its brand are used to assist partners in the ethical and sustainable production of goods whilst providing access into an increasingly conscientious consumer market.

Anyone know anything more about them? Are they on the level? In any case, something else to add to those baobab fact sheets.

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Global diets visualized

by Luigi Guarino on August 22, 2014

National Geographic’s eight-month series on food has caught up with Colin Khoury’s blockbuster paper on how many crops feed the world. The infographic on diet similarity looks ok on the printed page, I guess:

NatGeo_printed2

But it’s way cooler online.

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Big rice data portal

by Luigi Guarino on August 21, 2014

You remember the 3000 rice genomes project? You know, the one that represents the future of genebanks? Well, if you were wondering which 3000 accessions were actually chosen for sequencing, you can get that information, and much, much more, on the new website of the International Rice Informatics Consortium. Happy browsing. Well, maybe not on this page, which seems to need some work.

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Focusing on genebanks for climate change adaptation

by Luigi Guarino on August 20, 2014

The Focused Identification of Germplasm Strategy (FIGS) has been the subject of a fair number of posts here in the past couple of years. It has now clearly hit the big time, with a major workshop which got picked up by the BBC, no less. The latest paper to feature this strategy for more effectively mining genebank collections for the material you really want features the search for drought adaptation in faba beans.

Meanwhile, another workshop reminds us that breeding new varieties using the stuff you find in genebanks is just one way of adapting agriculture to climate change:

…there are various agricultural practices to offset the adverse effects of climate change on crop production and soil, such as mulching, that will help with water conservation and soil fertility, and crop rotation, which contributes to sustainable cultivation.

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Strategizing about conservation of horticultural crops

19 August 2014

Another report from one of our correspondents at the International Horticultural Congress: There were some great discussions during the IHC’s workshop on global conservation strategies for horticultural crops. Few of these exist, and even fewer have actively been implemented. The participants heard from several speakers about the state of development and implementation of the strategies […]

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Freeing the banana

19 August 2014

By freeing Musa balbisiana of infectious eBSV, virologists are once again friends with #banana breeders says Pierre-Yves Teycheney #IHC2014 — ProMusa (@promusa_banana) August 19, 2014 Well, that sounds teasingly intriguing. Fortunately, we have a mole at the relevant symposium of the International Horticultural Congress in Brisbane. Here’s his brief report from the trenches: Great talk […]

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Standing up for fruits and veggies

18 August 2014

The International Horticulture Congress is up and running in Brisbane, and getting a lot of attention from the Aussie media.1 There’s a slick video on the global importance of horticulture to help the frenzy along: Apart from the World Vegetable Center — whose DG came up with the quote of the day: “Things like cucumber […]

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Brainfood: Dryland protected areas, Breeding olives, Tomato cryo, Bacterial diversity, Beta diversity, Old hops, Wild strawberries, Sea bass genome, Forest management, Sorghum biomass

18 August 2014

The role of protected areas in supplying ten critical ecosystem services in drylands: a review. Let the communities take the lead, be inventive about governance. Breeding Oil and Table Olives for Mechanical Harvesting in Spain. 19,000 seedlings, 481 preselections in intermediate field trials, 31 advanced selections in a network of field trials, 1 new protected […]

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Capsules of Life

15 August 2014

The BBC’s Roots to Riches reaches genebanking for conservation, with the above title. Mainly about the Millennium Seed Bank, which is predictable, and perfectly fine, but we know there’s a lot more to it than that, of course.

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Totally terere

12 August 2014

The launching of FAO’s Traditional Crop of the Month with amaranth, just announced on Twitter, reminds me that I was going to post a couple of photos showing how much the crop is being used nowadays in Kenya. These show that terere leaves are used — along with other stuff — to fortify maize meal, […]

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