- Do you love healthy, nutritious, organic products?
- Do you care about food sovereignty and biodiversity?
- Do you support organic breeding and farming practices?
Welcome to our association Lebende Samen - Living Seeds e.V.!
Call to action: Invitation to participatory tomato breeding
At our members assembly last autumn, we were encouraged to initiate participatory breeding projects. Our long-time partner, member and friend Micha Groenewegen, co-founder, and breeder at Sementes Vivas in Portugal, has agreed to start a first attempt. Who of you wants to participate? You don't need a garden for this — a balcony or just a few plant buckets will be sufficient. Would you like to create your own tomato varieties together with us and thus increase biodiversity? Then send us an email with your address to: info(at)lebendesamen.bio. And please, also ask around who else might enjoy being part of this trial.
We from the non-profit association Lebende Samen - Living Seeds e.V. initiate research projects in the Mediterranean that aim at breeding nutricious and resistant organic plants for healthy yields. To finance our organic and biodynamic plant breeding programmes, conduct training programmes, establish networks and joint studies with research institutes, farmers and seed companies, we raise funds from individuals, foundations, national governments, and from the European Commission.
For organic agriculture to continue to thrive, farmers need strong, organic, open pollinated plants and seed varieties. Fertile plants, that are resilient to climate change. Living plants, that have the ability to sustainably feed us and nurture our soils at the same time. Plants, that carry living seeds which will secure the harvest of our future.
In the south of Europe, organic plant breeding and seed production is still in its infancy. Countries like Spain, Portugal or Morocco are incredibly rich in fruits and vegetables with a distinctive taste, optical characteristics and seductive scents. At the same time, their farmers already suffer heavily from the consequences of climate change. What they need are high-quality, organic seeds - "living seeds" - that bear healthy, tasty fruits despite the increasing heat, droughts, and pests.
Our non-profit association Living Seeds - Lebende Samen e.V. was founded in 2015 by committed visionaries who believe that 100% organic food from 100% organic seeds is possible - if the needed efforts are being made. Ever since, we have gathered funds for organic plant breeding projects in the Mediterranean and created a network of like-minded supporters who are willing to make "100% organic" come true.
Helmy Abouleish, CEO Sekem Holding and President of Demeter International
“Mankind needs good, healthy, organic and biodynamic seeds to meet major challenges such as healthy, independent nutrition, mental and physical resistance, and climate change. Traditional, open-pollinated seeds must be professionalized to make them usable for farmers who then make their many vital ingredients available to the consumers. All of this requires a lot of research and intensive plant breeding – also in the Mediterranean regions. This is why I support the non-profit association Living Seeds in its work to initialize and implement breeding programs for our region."
Sarah Wiener, organic cook and member of the European Parliament
"As a passionate organic cook, I know that good nutrition and healthy, tasty food does not raise from the plate. It all begins - magically - with seeds. Organic, reproducible seeds are the origin and bear the potential of fragrance, color, taste and texture of our food - the very elements I deal with as a cook. This is why I support the work of the non-profit association Lebende Samen - Living Seeds e.V. wholeheartedly. "
Nikolai Fuchs, board member Zukunftsstiftung Landwirtschaft
“In addition to products like citrus fruits that simply do not grow in Northern Europe, we import tomatoes, pasta and much more from Mediterranean countries. We hardly ever think about the seed these products come from and how dependent many farmers in the South are from corporate structures. Living seeds wants to fill this gap - and I support that."
Christiane Löhr, artist from Cologne (Germany)
Since I've been moving in nature, I have been magically attracted by plant seeds. On my artistic path they have found a permanent place as a material for sculptures, I use their surprising properties - the clinging capacity of the burdock, the unnoticed lightness of the flying seeds, the space-creating structure of the plant stems. Visually and physically I feel the concentrated power, the potential of a new beginning and the dormant monumental in a tiny format - little miracles that require our attention. The work of the Living Seeds association has never been more meaningful than at this very time, when precious information from plants must not be lost. I am committed to this with full conviction. "
Photo credits: Helmy Abouleish © SEKEM, Sarah Wiener © Christian Kaufmann, Nikolai Fuchs © Frank Rogner, Christiane Löhr © Christiane Löhr