Organic plant breeding is still a small sector and the varieties used in organic farming are mainly derived from conventional plant breeding. This means, many varieties used in organic farming are quite old. Many “modern” varieties used in organic are selected under mainstream conditions using seed treatment, herbicides and mineral fertilizers. But the organic sector needs varieties bred for low input farming, adapted to local conditions and often aims for specific food qualities. Organic plant breeding often goes hand in hand with the conservation of traditional and local varieties – which is an important activity to keep a broad range of genetic resources alive. But conservation must not be confused with organic breeding, which is essential to provide organic farmers with modern varieties suited to serve the present organic food sector.
- The roots of authentic taste – a factsheet for consumers
- Organic from the Start – a factsheet for farmers
- Make your customers taste the difference – a factsheet for food chain operators
- IFOAM (2018): Seed and plant propagation material in Organic Agriculture