LIVESEED – Organic seed breeding at the Organic World Congress

The LIVESEED project, which IFOAM Organics Europe co-cordinates, is contributing to the Organic World Congress (OWC) with a colourful program. Organised 8-10 September 2021 in Rennes, France, the Congress is an excellent opportunity to showcase the project’s results and recommendations.

Pre-conference: Seed ambassadors

6-7 September, hybrid event

The pre-conference will focus on culinary diversity and explore potentials to breed for taste, discuss plant breeding approaches and models for supporting the transition to truly sustainable food systems, including participatory plant breeding and seeds as commons as tools to integrate biodiversity in society. It will aim to support the next generation of organic plant breeders and seed ambassadors.

The pre-conference will involve a field visit, 7 thematic workshops, and a joint event with LIVESEED’s sister projects BRESOV and ECOBREED. The full program is available on the LIVESEED website.

Would you like to attend the pre-conference?

LIVESEED at the OWC – Day 1, 8 September

09:00-10:30 Exchange session (on-site): Engagement.biobreeding, a FiBL initiative, will discuss the integration of organic plant breeding into the organic value chain – Parallel 1 (digital), Stakeholder Forum.

11:00-12:30 Exchange Session: Taste the innovation of seed ambassadors – STA – Parallel 2 (digital) Stakeholder Forum

In this workshop, Micaela Colley (OSA) will present the results of the Pre-Conference (see 6-7th  Sept 2021) Seed Ambassadors: Building an International Network to Advance Organic Seed Systems, and discussions will take place on the key questions regarding the implementation of the systems-based breeding approach in the different sectors and in society.

15:30-17:00 Oral Presentations by LIVESEED partners: Plant breeding and food quality – SCI – Parallel 2 (digital) Science Forum

In this session, Edwin Nuijten from De Beersche Hoeve will share experiences on breeding vegetables for quality and taste from the Netherlands, while Adrian Rodriguez Burruezo (UPV, Spain) will present LIVESEED results on tomato and pepper breeding from using ancient landraces.  LIVESEED Advisory Committee Member Micaela Coley from the Organic Seed Alliance will bring an example of carrot breeding that created added value for growers and consumers.

17:30-19:00 Oral Presentations by LIVESEED partners: Plant breeding for organic cereals – SCI – Parallel 2 (digital) Science Forum

Carl Vollenweider from Dottenelderhof (Germany) will present his findings on the agronomic performance of heterogeneous cereal populations.

LIVESEED at the OWC – Day 2, 9 September

09:00 -10:30 Oral Presentations

During the Oral Presentations Session on Collaborative approach for resilient food systems: seeds – Parallel 2 (digital) Dr. Stephanie Klaedtke from ITAB will present approaches to plant and seed health for organic agriculture in the Farmers and Advisors Forum.

Parallel to this session, Judit Feher and Szilvia Bencze from ÖMKi will present experiences with On-farm testing of emmer and einkorn landraces under organic conditions and ancient wheat varieties as a tool for diversification, in the Science Forum session on Arable crops (SCI – Parallel 5 digital).

Parallel to these sessions, in the Science Forum session on Plant Health management I, Christine Arncken will present LIVESEED results on white lupin (Lupinus albus) anthracnose resistance pre-breeding project in Switzerland.

11:00-12:30 Exchange Session: How to increase production and use of organic seed? State of the art and best practices – STA – Parallel 3 (digital) Stakeholder Forum.

Freya Schaefer (FiBL-DE) and LIVESEED partners will discuss the present the state of organic seed production and use in Europe and the US, based on the outcomes of the surveys conducted in Europe and in the US by the Organic Seed Alliance, and present incentives in place and good practice exemplars. Through interactive facilitated discussions, the event will discuss sustainable forms of incentives for the future development of the organic seed sector.

Exchange Session: In the Science Forum, Dr Stephanie Klaedte (ITAB) will discuss whether plant and seed health in organic systems are embedded in or disconnected from interactions with microbial communities, in the session on Plant and soil health: systems approaches.

15:30-17:00  Oral Presentations by LIVESEED partners: Organic plant breeding and participatory approaches – SCI – Parallel 2 (digital) Science forum

In this session, three LIVESEED partners will present. Edwin Nuijten from De Beersche Hoeve will talk about the implementation of the systems-based approach, Eva Winter (FiBL-CH) will present LIVESEED’s findings on assessing policy interventions to reduce derogations of non-organic seed use in organic productions, Francesco Solfanelli (from the University of Ancona, Italy) will talk about the results of a research on organic national seed databases in the EU.

Parallel to these sessions, Riccardo Bocci from Rete Semirurali, Italy, will talk about developing innovative seed systems for organic farming in the Stakeholder Forum session on Genetic diversity – Parallel 3 (digital).

17:30-19:00 Oral Presentations by LIVESEED partners: Drivers & tools for organic development – SCI – Parallel 3 (digital) Science Forum: LIVESEED’s study on consumers’ viewpoints towards NBT techniques will be presented by Raffaele Zanoli (UNIVPM).

Parallel to this session, in the Science Forum Session on Organic plant breeding and systems approaches, Parallel 2 (digital), Monika Messmer will present the LIVESEED project and its main recommendations, followed by a presentation by Ambrogio Costanzo from the Organic Research Centre in the UK on a participatory wheat variety program.

Visit the LIVESEED website to learn more and follow the latest project’s developments on Twitter and Facebook using @LIVESEEDeu and #LIVESEEDeu.

LIVESEED aims to boost organic seed and plant breeding across Europe. IFOAM Organics Europe and FiBL-Switzerland coordinate the project with 50 partners covering 18 EU countries. The LIVESEED project will increase transparency and will provide recommendations on organic seeds. The project partners analyse national seed databases and factors influencing organic seed production and use. They also explore national policies, smart practices, build EU infrastructure and analyse issues on propagation. The partners also want to advance testing protocols to improve the availability of organic seeds, ensuring they are adapted to the realities of organic farmers. LIVESEED is an EU Horizon 2020-funded project.

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