1st Edition

Farmers and Plant Breeding Current Approaches and Perspectives

Edited By Ola Tveitereid Westengen, Tone Winge Copyright 2020
    354 Pages 37 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    354 Pages 37 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book presents the history of, and current approaches to, farmer-breeder collaboration in plant breeding, situating this work in the context of sustainable food systems, as well as national and international policy and law regimes.

    Plant breeding is essential to food production, climate-change adaptation and sustainable development. This book brings together experienced practitioners and researchers involved in collaborative breeding programmes across a diversity of crops and agro-ecologies around the world. Case studies include collaborative sorghum and pearl millet breeding for water-stressed environments in West Africa, participatory rice breeding for intensive rice farming in the Mekong Delta, and evolutionary participatory quinoa breeding for organic agriculture in North America. While outlining the challenges, the volume also highlights the positive impacts, such as yield increases, farmers’ empowerment in the innovation and development processes, contributions to maintenance of crop genetic diversity and adaptation to climate change. This collection offers a range of perspectives on enabling conditions for farmer–breeder collaboration in plant breeding in relation to biodiversity agreements such as the Plant Treaty, trade agreements and related intellectual property rights (IPR) regimes, and national seed policies and laws.

    Relevant to a wide audience, including practitioners with experience in plant breeding and management of crop genetic resources and those with a broader interest in agriculture and development, as well as students of international cooperation and development, this volume is a timely addition to the literature.

    Foreword by Luigi Guarino and Hannes Dempewolf

    Part I Introduction

    1. New Perspectives on Farmer–Breeder Collaboration in Plant Breeding

    Ola T. Westengen, Tone Winge

    2. Origins and Evolution of Participatory Approaches in Plant Breeding

    Trygve Berg, Ola T. Westengen

    Part II Current Approaches to Farmer–Breeder Collaboration

    3. Long-term Collaboration between Farmers’ Organizations and Plant Breeding Programmes: Sorghum and Pearl Millet in West Africa

    Eva Weltzien, Fred Rattunde, Mamourou Sidibe, Kirsten vom Brocke, Abdoulaye Diallo, Bettina Haussmann, Bocar Diallo, Baloua Nebie, Aboubacar Toure, Anja Christinck

    4. Rice PPB in India and Nepal: Client-oriented Plant Breeding Using Few, Carefully Chosen Crosses

    John.R. Witcombe, D.S. Virk, K.D. Joshi

    5. Twenty Years of Participatory Varietal Selection at AfricaRice: Lessons from Farmer Involvement in Variety Development

    Nicholas Tyack, Baboucarr Manneh, Abdourasmane Konate, Theodore Kessy, Alexis Traore, Moussa Sie

    6. Native Maize in Mexico: Participatory Breeding and Connections to Culinary Markets

    Martha C. Willcox, Fernando Castillo, Flavio Aragón Cuevas, Humberto Castro Garcia

    7. Pushing Back Against Bureaucracy: Farmers’ Role in Decentralizing Plant Breeding and Seed Production in Honduras

    Marvin Gomez, Juan Carlos Rosas, Sally Humphries, Jose Jimenez, Merida Barahona, Carlos Avila, Paola Orellana, Fredy Sierra

    8. Participatory Varietal Selection in the Andes: Farmer Involvement in Selecting Potatoes with Traits from Wild Relatives

    Maria Scurrah, Raul Ccanto, Merideth Bonierbale

    9. A 20-Year Journey: Participatory Breeding of Maize in South-West China

    Yiching Song, Ronnie Vernooy, Lanqiu Qi, Hexia Xie, Milin Tian, Xin Song

    10. Evolutionary Participatory Quinoa Breeding for Organic Agroecosystems in the US Pacific Northwest

    Julianne Kellogg, Kevin Murphy

    Part III Overarching Concerns and New Perspectives

    11. Participatory Plant Breeding: Human Development and Social Reform

    Rene Salazar, Gigi Manicad, Anita Dohar, Bert Visser

    12. Building Collaborative Advantages Through Long-Term Farmer–Breeder Collaboration: Practical Experiences from West Africa

    Anja Christinck, Fred Rattunde, Eva Weltzien

    13. Sourcing and Deploying New Crop Varieties in Mountain Production Systems

    Bhuwon Sthapit, Devendra Gauchan, Sajal Sthapit, Krishna Hari Ghimire, Bal Krishna Joshi, Paola De Santis, Devra I. Jarvis

    14. Expanding Community Support in Genetic Diversity Management: The FFS Approach

    Bert Visser, Hilton Mbozi, Patrick Kasasa, Anita Dohar, Rene Salazar, Andrew Mushita, Gigi Manicad

    15. From Participatory to Evolutionary Plant Breeding

    Salvatore Ceccarelli, Stefania Grando

    Part IV Collaborative Approaches: International and National Legal Contexts

    16. Participatory Plant Breeding as a Tool for Implementing Farmers’ Rights and Sustainable Use under the Plant Treaty

    Tone Winge

    17. Funding Participatory Plant Breeding: Outlook and Future Challenges

    Alvaro Toledo

    18. Seed Laws: Bottlenecks and Opportunities for Participatory Plant Breeding

    Bram De Jonge, Gigi Manicad, Andrew Mushita, Nori Ignacio, Alejandro Argumedo, Bert Visser

    19. Participatory Plant Breeding and Sui Generis Plant Variety Protection

    Daniele Manzella, Selim Louafi

    20. The Straitjacket of Plant Breeding: Can It Be Eased?

    Åsmund Bjørnstad, Ola T. Westengen


    Ola Tveitereid Westengen is an Associate Professor at the Department of International Environment and Development Studies (Noragric), Faculty of Landscape and Society, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, Norway.

    Tone Winge is a Senior Research Fellow at the Fridtjof Nansen Institute, Lysaker, Norway.

    "Engaging farmers and their families in all stages of the global effort to make agricultural systems more sustainable and productive is a vital prerequisite to success. This timely and remarkable book focuses on collaborations between farmers and plant breeders across all types of agroecosystems, and offers real hope for widespread redesign and transformation." - Jules Pretty, University of Essex, UK

    "Addressing the Grand Challenges faced by agriculture under a global changing climate requires a highly client-oriented, participatory research-for-development approach. This book provides insights on, and lessons learnt from ‘citizen science’ for both decentralized plant breeding and on-farm variety testing. It further shows how genetic diversity may remain in agro-ecosystems by involving the farming community in crop betterment and deployment. This publication also highlights the hurdles to overcome when pursuing participatory plant breeding. Its analytical and clearly written text along with the examples given by various authors in each chapter demonstrates the advantages of this citizen science approach for variety replacement elsewhere." - Rodomiro Ortiz, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden

    "This book will be of interest not only to researchers working directly on crop improvement, but also to policy makers and other professionals involved in food and nutritional security. The authors amalgamate knowledge from decades of farmers’ participation in plant breeding, as a major component of improving various crops around the world. For generations, farmers have been advancing their varieties through on-farm mass selections while also conserving seeds. Therefore, it is highly prudent to enhance the partnership between farmers and plant breeders. The publication contributes to this goal by providing insight into approaches, concerns, new perspectives and legal contexts for effective farmer-breeder collaborations." - Segenet Kelemu, International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology, Kenya