Agricultural Biodiversity
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Seed Map

Seed Map | Agricultural Biodiversity | Scoop.it
RT @EveEmshwiller: MT @USCCanada: Svalbard Seed Vault 1 of many initiatives our http://t.co/Zxw2zEugzd features http://t.co/9EAvgvIB2R http…
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Agricultural Biodiversity
Genetic and species diversity of crops, trees, livestock, fish, pollinators, microbes etc etc
Curated by Luigi Guarino
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The world's largest banana genebank

The Bioversity International Musa Transit Centre is the world's largest banana genebank. Hosted at the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium, it contributes to ...
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Potatoes at the Chelsea Flower Show, again

Nice to see agricultural biodiversity on display at the Chelsea Flower Show, in the form of potatoes, of all things. Scroll down past the very boring flowers to the very exciting tuber display. A similar — maybe the same?
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The race to create super-crops

The race to create super-crops | Agricultural Biodiversity | Scoop.it
Old-fashioned breeding techniques are bearing more fruit than genetic engineering in developing hyper-efficient plants.

Via CIMMYT, Int.
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THE LAND OF PUNT

THE LAND OF PUNT | Agricultural Biodiversity | Scoop.it

Believed to be a mythical land for centuries, excavations reveal that the Land of Punt was a real land known for


Via Seth Dixon
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SOTWP Day 1: Climate change, protected areas and extinction risk

In which our friend Nora Castañeda summarizes the first day of the State of the World’s Plants Symposium. The first day of the Kew symposium was divided in three sessions: climate change, protected areas and extinction risk.
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Better Than Organic: Sustainability and Wine | Wine Folly

Better Than Organic: Sustainability and Wine | Wine Folly | Agricultural Biodiversity | Scoop.it
How does one actually support sustainability in wine? Here is a guide explaining the different types of certifications in wine so you can buy wine smarter.

Via Elisabeth St. de Pablo
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A genebank in central Madrid

Had a nice afternoon out at the Real Jardín Botánico in Madrid last week, offspring in tow (who thankfully didn’t complain too much). It goes back to the late 18th century, and it’s beautifully laid out, and indeed located, though a cool and wet afternoon in early May did not show it off at its […]
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Finding a good home for teosinte

Finding a good home for teosinte | Agricultural Biodiversity | Scoop.it
Speaking of botanical gardens maintaining collections of crop diversity, this just in: A large collection of Teosinte seed was recently transferred from Duke University to the Missouri Botanical Garden Seed Bank. Teosinte is the wild ancestor to modern corn and the preservation of its genetic material is important to corn research and supports the long […]
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Truth in Olive Oil: The Strange Case of Italian Olive Oil (2016)

Truth in Olive Oil: The Strange Case of Italian Olive Oil (2016) | Agricultural Biodiversity | Scoop.it

When news of xylella hit in 2013, I immediately thought: Scam. In Puglia, ancient olive trees are protected by law from being cut down or otherwise removed. As you can imagine, this law has been unpopular with certain businesses, like real estate developers and road-builders. The areas affected by xylella were, by strange chance, extraordinarily beautiful landscapes – ripe for posh new hotels. The emergency plan which a handful of authorities drew up shortly after the announcement of the xylella epidemic in Puglia was trenchant: cut down all the infected trees, along with a goodly number of their neighbors in case they too had been blighted. Ecco fatto: suddenly there would be more elbow (or hotel) room in several lovely seaside locales in Puglia.

 

Which of course is only one interpretation of the facts. On the other hand, I'm no agronomist, and as reports of the seriousness of the xylella infection echoed in the press, I began to think I'd jumped to a hasty and cynical conclusion. (For more views on the xylella story, see this independent blog.) Developments over the last few months, however, suggest I may have been right all along. A 2015 report on mafia infiltration of Italian agriculture, written by a team led by the renowned anti-mafia prosecutor Gian Carlo Caselli, dedicated a 9-page sub-chapter to what it called “The Strange Case of Xylella Fastidiosa,” echoing Robert Louis Stevenson’s novella of Jekyll and Hyde. The report noted that xylella broke out shortly after an international agronomy conference had been held in Bari in 2010, though the infection appeared not in olive trees near Bari, but in the Gallipoli area – precisely where hordes of troublesome grandfather trees were holding up plans for a perfectly lovely new mega-resort. Cue yet another criminal investigation: in mid-December, prosecutors led by Cataldo Motta, chief magistrate in Lecce, charged ten agronomists and other public “experts” who’d launched the xylella jihad with a range of misdeeds, among which are spreading plant disease, making false official statements, and destroying and disfiguring natural landscapes. (Italian and English.) The Lecce prosecutors also blocked further eradication of ancient olive trees, at least for the time being.


Via Kamoun Lab @ TSL
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Talking non-biotech strawberries and citrus

If the recent post on the UC Davis Strawberry Wars whetted your appetite, the Talking Biotech podcast can help with a leisurely run-through the history of the crop and efforts to breed it from Kevin Folta and his guest, Dr
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CWR front and centre

CWR front and centre | Agricultural Biodiversity | Scoop.it
To coincide with the State of the World’s Plants Symposium, which starts today, Kew have just dropped a monumental report of the same name, complete with fancy website. Nice to see crop wild relatives get a decent amount of space (p. 21) in the section on useful plants. Oh, and the report and symposium come […]
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Rethinking plant patents, and rethinking again

Rethinking plant patents, and rethinking again | Agricultural Biodiversity | Scoop.it
Åsmund Bjørnstad, a plant breeder and professor at the Norwegian University of Life Sciences at Ås, recently published a stimulating article on plant patents. We asked Daniele Manzella, a policy and legal consultant, to comment. Below are his thoughts. Interested readers may also want to read another recent post on seed IP issues. Åsmund Bjørnstad […]
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Will international tea party include genebanks?

Will international tea party include genebanks? | Agricultural Biodiversity | Scoop.it
Announcements such as this from UC Davis, of the launch of the Global Tea Initiative, make me wish there was a market for roving agrobiodiversity bloggers and tweeters. Alas, I’m reduced to the usual ploy of asking participants if they’d like to blog the thing for us. Will genebanks be discussed? There aren’t that many […]
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The Adam and Eve of apples?

The Adam and Eve of apples? | Agricultural Biodiversity | Scoop.it
It was 1993 and US Department of Agriculture (USDA) horticulturist Phil Forsline flew over the magnificent mountain ranges of south-eastern Kazakhstan in a helicopter.
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US: Fresh-Milled Bread Movement Might Make America's Bread Great Again

US: Fresh-Milled Bread Movement Might Make America's Bread Great Again | Agricultural Biodiversity | Scoop.it
It appears bakeries countrywide are starting to produce bread made from fresh-milled flour that is as tasty as it is healthful.

Via CIMMYT, Int.
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The Extraordinary Life and Times of Strawberry | Save The Food | Ad Council

Follow the journey of a strawberry from the farm to the refrigerator to understand all that it takes to bring your food to you. Did you know that 40% of ou

Via Elisabeth St. de Pablo
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Blogging the state of our plants

Our friend Nora Castañeda attended the State of the World’s Plants Symposium a couple of weeks back and was kind enough to send us some of her impressions. We’ll publish them in instalments over the next few days.
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SOTWP Day 2: Useful plants, plant health and invasive plants

Our friend Nora Castañeda summarizes the second and final day of Kew’s State of the World’s Plants Symposium. Thanks again, Nora, and see you next year.
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Food and plant resources roundup

A couple of meta-resources today. First, a handy database of botanical illustrations, with thanks to Mark Nesbitt of Kew for the tip: Plantillustrations.org is a non-commercial website and will not trouble you with irritating advertisements or ask you for donations. It provides a searchable index so that you can easily find plant illustrations by using […]
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Blogging the olive plague

It was inevitable, I suppose. There’s now a whole blog dedicated to the “Diffusion of xylella in Italian olive trees.” The latest post comments on an article in Nature which seems to suggest things are beginning to move in normally sleepy Puglia, epicenter of the apocalypse. Here’s hoping. But I still think they should have […]
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PLOS Pathogens: Fungal Genomics Challenges the Dogma of Name-Based Biosecurity (2016)

PLOS Pathogens: Fungal Genomics Challenges the Dogma of Name-Based Biosecurity (2016) | Agricultural Biodiversity | Scoop.it

A paradigm shift is needed to overcome these serious shortcomings in biosecurity. Risk assessments should target the genes of pathogens rather than their names. Genomic research over the last decade has paved the way towards gene-based biosecurity. Detailed information about fungal genomes can help predict risks posed by undescribed pathogens through (i) prediction of lifestyle, e.g., biotrophic and saprotrophic fungi can be distinguished from nectrotrophic and hemibiotrophic fungi, and saprotrophic fungi can be distinguished from pathogens. In time, protein families that exist in effective pathogens will be discovered and may be predictive for organisms that have an unknown ecology or life strategy. Software for rapid analysis of bacterial genomic data to screen for pathogenic proteins has been designed, and similar tools and databases will be developed for fungal pathogens. (ii) Identification of potential pathogenicity factors, i.e., factors necessary for disease development that suppress or manipulate host-cell physiology to the advantage of a pathogen, but which are not essential for a pathogen to complete its life cycle. One example is disease effector proteins, which are likely expressed by all plant pathogens and may target similar defensive proteins in their hosts . Effector genes do not have conserved motifs in fungi, and identifiers in the genome, such as diversifying selection, will be crucial to identify these genes that may be a clue to pathogenicity. (iii) Identification of transposable elements or high mutation rates, which are implicated in the evolution of pathogenicity genes in fungi.


Via Elsa Ballini, Kamoun Lab @ TSL
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Elsa Ballini's curator insight, May 13, 6:58 AM
How can we change risk assessments for wheat blast?
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Baby oil steps

Is anyone looking for resistant material? That’s what we asked back in August last year, at the height of the Italian Xylella olive plague panic. Then in March this year there was news of some 10 cultivars being tested. Now comes this: An experimental olive plot with almost twenty different olive cultivars (24 replicates for […]
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Following Brassica into Genebank Database Hell

Scientists at The Genome Analysis Centre (TGAC) have released the first web repository for Brassica (mustard plants) trait data to tackle reproducibility, user controlled data sharing and analysis worldwide. Scoring the versatile crop’s beneficial traits will assist Brassica breeders in improving their crop yields, increased nutritional benefits and reduce our carbon footprint through biofuel production. […]
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Mapping out your garden

Mapping out your garden | Agricultural Biodiversity | Scoop.it
There’s a website called Plants Map which lets you manage and share information about the precise location and characteristics of the plants you grow, including photos, and even print out nice labels, complete with QR codes. The target audience seems to be gardens (including botanical gardens), nurseries, and the like. But it could be field […]
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Request for pulse nutritional data

Request for pulse nutritional data | Agricultural Biodiversity | Scoop.it
As part of the International Year of Pulses, we are working on a global database on the composition of pulses, starting with the collection of analytical data. We have found many scientific articles on pulses, which we are compiling.
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