A blog maintained by Tevita Kete, PGR Officer
Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC), Suva, Fiji Islands
This weblog documents the activities of Pacific Agricultural Genetic Resources Network (PAPGREN), along with other information on plant genetic resources (PGR) in the Pacific.
The myriad varieties found within cultivated plants are fundamental to the present and future productivity of agriculture. PAPGREN, which is coordinated by the Land Resources Division of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC), helps Pacific countries and territories to conserve their crop genetic diversity sustainably, with technical assistance from the Bioversity International (BI) and support from NZAID and ACIAR.
SPC also hosts the Centre of Pacific Crops and Trees (CEPaCT). The CEPaCT maintains regional in vitro collections of crops important to the Pacific and carries out research on tissue culture technology. The CEPaCT Adviser is Dr Mary Taylor (MaryT@spc.int), the CEPaCT Curator is Ms Valerie Tuia (ValerieT@spc.int).
PAPGREN coordination and support
Mr William Wigmore
Mr Adelino S. Lorens
Dr Lois Englberger
Mr Apisai Ucuboi
Dr Maurice Wong
Mr Tianeti Beenna Ioane
Mr Frederick Muller
Mr Herman Francisco
Ms Rosa Kambuou
Ms Laisene Samuelu
Mr Jimi Saelea
Mr Tony Jansen
Mr Finao Pole
Mr Frazer Bule Lehi
Interested in GIS?
Wednesday, October 22, 2003
Posted 6:32 PM by Luigi
Call for Articles
ILEIA, the Centre for Information on Low External Input and Sustainable Agriculture, is looking for relevant articles, new research and information on networking activities, publications and web sites for the coming editions of their LEISA (Low External Input and Sustainable Agriculture) Magazine. The next issue, due in March 2004 will be on UNDERUTILISED PLANT SPECIES. The announcement below is from a recent email posting by ILEIA and describes what they are looking for. If there is interest from PAPGREN members and others, we could put together a review drawing together examples of regional work on plants like taro, giant swamp taro, breadfruit, bele, canarium etc. Just send me your experiences and we'll prepare a joint article. Or you may want to send in your own contribution.
It has been estimated that humans have, at one time or another, cultivated or collected more than 7000 edible plant species. Today, however, only about 30 crops form the basis of world's agriculture. Over 50% of our energy requirements are now met by just three crops: rice, wheat and maize. The continuously narrowing base for global food security limits the options available to farmers, and reduces the agricultural biodiversity necessary to provide security in resource-poor environments.
Many underutilised species are particularly useful in marginal lands where they have evolved through selection over generations to increase productivity and withstand stress conditions. These crops contribute to sustainable production and usually require less external inputs than high yielding varieties of major crops. Often they contain essential micronutrients not present in staple foods. These crops are also part of a great cultural heritage and diversity that enriches our lives. Many rural people and development organizations have recognized the importance of these underutilised and neglected species and have successfully increased their production and utilization, thereby improving livelihoods, providing more options to small farmers and increasing diversity within the agricultural system.
This next issue of LEISA will present some of these successful cases. We invite articles on experiences with revival, conservation, cultivation, utilization and marketing of underutilised plant species that are interesting to field practitioners and will make it possible to promote the use of these species. Deadline for contributions is the 1st of December, 2003.
You are invited to contribute to these issues with articles (about 800, 1600 or 2400 words + 2-3 illustrations and references), suggest possible authors, and send us information about publications, training courses, meetings and websites.
For authors guide see http://www.ileia.org/2/guide.html
For coming issues see http://www.ileia.org/2/papers.html
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Agrobiodiversity Weblog: For discussions of conservation and sustainable use of the genetic resources of crops, livestock and their wild relatives.