Implementing the Treaty in Nepal: new book

Joshi BK, P Chaudhary, D Upadhya and R Vernooy (editors). 2016. Implementing the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture in Nepal: Achievements and Challenges. Local Initiatives for Biodiversity, Research and Development, Pokhara, Nepal; Nepal Agricultural Research Council and Ministry of Agricultural Development, Kathmandu, Nepal; and Bioversity International, Rome, Italy.

This book, with contributions from national partners in Nepal and Bioversity International, documents the results of the research and capacity development efforts to implement the ITPGRFA in Nepal. Its chapters cover five main interrelated themes: national-level multi-lateral system policy development; policy actors and networks; germplasm flows and interdependence; farmers’ involvement; and technology transfer. ITPGRFA implementation in Nepal has made considerable progress, but the policy environment in Nepal could be further improved. A positive development is the drafting of new policy and legal instruments, such as the agro-biodiversity conservation and utilization act and regulations.

with-joshi-2

Co-editors BK Joshi and Ronnie Vernooy receive the first copy of the book. Photo: Bioversity International

The book can be freely downloaded.

http://www.bioversityinternational.org/index.php?id=244&tx_news_pi1%5Bnews%5D=8625&cHash=3d2de1c28f8bb265161c72cf4d3bdfb5

Advertisements

Primer for national focal points of the Treaty and Nagoya Protocol

New publication: Mutually supportive implementation of the Plant Treaty and the Nagoya Protocol. A primer for national focal points and other stakeholders.

This discussion draft is based upon a structured set of interactions – a survey, a workshop, held 3-6 June 2014 and follow-up analysis – involving ‘tandems’ (the national focal points for the Nagoya Protocol (NP) of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGRFA) from a single country working together as a team) and independent experts and stakeholders whose daily activities are effected by access and benefit-sharing (ABS) regulations.  We hope this document will provide national policy actors with a tool to increase their ability and confidence to implement the CBD/NP and ITPGRFA/multilateral system of access and benefit-sharing in mutually supportive ways.

The final version will be published later in 2015.  We invite you to send comments to Michael Halewood, corresponding editor (m.halewood@cgiar.org).

The publication is now available from Bioversity International. Presentations made at the tandem workshop are available here. Continue reading

Outputs by GRPI project partners

We are delighted to share news about some outputs recently made available from the national teams in the GRPI2 project, and others that are under development, but will be finished soon.  Some of these are available electronically and we include the links.

Bhutan
1.    National Biodiversity Centre (NBC). (forthcoming) A study on the history of the introduction and adoption of important food crops in Bhutan. Rice, Maize, Potato and Chili. NBC, Bhutan.
2.    Phuntsho, U. and Vernooy, R. (in press). Making technology transfer work: case studies of the food processing sector in Bhutan.
3.    Tamang, A. and Dukpa, G. (in press). Bhutan: the Bumthang community seed bank. In: Vernooy, R., Shrestha, P. and Sthapit, B. Community Seed Banks: origins, evolution and prospects. Earthscan from Routledge.

Burkina Faso
1.    Jade (2014). Traité international sur les ressources phytogénétiques pour l’alimentation et l’agriculture: 10 questions pour en comprendre l’essentiel (un poster à l’intention des chercheurs)/a poster for researchers. Download the file.
2.    Jade (2014). Traité international sur les ressources phytogénétiques pour l’alimentation et l’agriculture (un dépliant en français reprenant l’essentiel des messages du traité)/a leaflet summarizing the key elements of the Treaty. Download the file.
3.    Jade (2014). Banque de genes: Le coffre-fort de la future generation (bande dessinée vidéo en français scénarisant le contenu du traité et de son système multilateral). Idée originale: Souleymane Ouattara. Scénario: Souleymane Ouattara, Gaoussou Nabaloum et Pascal Ouédraogo, alias ‘Ledon’ (an animated video about the Treaty and the MLS)
4.    Jade (2014). Et si le tô venait à disparaître? (un film sur les enjeux du traité à partir de cas et de témoignages d’acteurs) Réalisation: Souleymane Ouattara. (a film about the Treaty based on examples and viewpoints)
5.    Jade (2014) Les graines de vie d’hier, d’aujourd’hui et de demain (un magazine radiophonique en langue nationale mooré de 45 minutes). Réalisation: Gaoussou Nabaloum. (a radio broadcast in the Moore’ language about the Treaty)

Costa Rica
1.    Cabrera Medaglia, J. (2014) La implementación del Tratado Internacional de Recursos Fitogenéticos para la Alimentación y la Agricultura en Costa Rica : Recomendaciones legales y de política. Bioversity International, Rome and Comisión Nacional de Recursos Fitogenéticos, San José, Costa Rica . Download the file.
2.    Cabrera Medaglia, J. (2014) Indentificación de las posibles autoridades nacionales competentes para la promoción de la implementación del Tratado Internacional de Recursos Fitogenéticos para la Alimentación y la Agricultura en Costa Rica. Bioversity International, Rome and Comisión Nacional de Recursos Fitogenéticos, San José, Costa Rica. Download the file.
3.    CONAREFI (2014) (set of fact sheets). Fortalecimiento de las capacidades nacionales para la implementación del Tratado Internacional sobre los Recursos Fitogenéticos para la Alimentación y la Agricultura en Costa Rica
4.    Elizondo Porras, F.L., Araya Villalobos, R., Hernández Fonseca, J.C. Martínez Umaña, K. (in press). Costa Rica: Unión de Semilleros del Sur.  In: Vernooy, R., Shrestha, P. and Sthapit, B. Community Seed Banks: origins, evolution and prospects. Earthscan from Routledge.
5.    Vásquez Morera, N. and Solano Sánchez, W. (2014). Diagnóstico de instituciones nacionales y regionales que conservan recursos fitogenéticos para alimentación y agricultura en Costa Rica. Bioversity International, Rome and Comisión Nacional de Recursos Fitogenéticos, San José, Costa Rica

Guatemala
1.    Galluzzi, G. and Lapeña, I. (in press). Guatemala: Community seed reserves restore maize diversity. .  In: Vernooy, R., Shrestha, P. and Sthapit, B. Community Seed Banks: origins, evolution and prospects. Earthscan from Routledge.
2.    Lapeña, I., Vásquez, F. and Say, E. (2014). El Tratado Internacional sobre Recursos Fitogenéticos para La Alimentación y la Agricultura (TIRFAA) en Guatemala. Proceso de implementación del Sistema Multilateral de Acceso y Distribución de Beneficios. Download the file.

Nepal
1.    Dilli, J., Manisha, J. and Pitambar, S. (in press). Nepal: the community seed bank in Tamaphok. In: Vernooy, R., Shrestha, P. and Sthapit, B. Community Seed Banks: origins, evolution and prospects. Earthscan from Routledge

Rwanda
1.    Policy brief (forthcoming). Implementing the ITPGRFA and Nagoya protocol in Rwanda: implications for ABS.
2.    Niyibigira T., Nyirigira A. and Otieno G. (forthcoming). Stakeholders in Technology transfer in Rwanda: the case of Biofortified beans.
3.    Dusengemungu, L., Ndacyayisenga, T., Otieno, G., Nyirigira, A.R. and Gapusi, J.W. (in press). Rwanda: the Rubaya community gene bank. In: Vernooy, R., Shrestha, P. and Sthapit, B. Community Seed Banks: origins, evolution and prospects. Earthscan from Routledge

Uganda
1.    Zaake E., Mulumba J.W., Otieno G. and Ogwal R. (forthcoming). The History of Crops Domestication and Interdependence: Case studies of Major Staples in Uganda.
2.    Mulumba J.W., Otieno G. and Ogwal R. (forthcoming). Networks matter: Systemic interactions and coalitions in the implementation of the International Treaty for Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture in Uganda.
3.    Adokoracha, J.; Kiwukaa, C., Zaakea, E.; Nankya, R. and Mulumba, J.W. (forthcoming). Stakeholders involvement in technology transfer in Uganda.
4.    Policy brief (forthcoming) Policy implementation and legal space for the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGRFA) in Uganda.
5.    Mulumba, J.W., Nankya, R., Kiwuka, C., Adokorach, J., Otieno, G., Kyomugisha, M. Fadda, C. and Jarvis, D.I. (in press) Uganda: the Kiziba community gene bank. In: Vernooy, R., Shrestha, P. and Sthapit, B. Community Seed Banks: origins, evolution and prospects. Earthscan from Routledge.

Community seed banks and the International Year of Family Farming 2014

2014 is the International Year of Family Farming. Around the world, events are organized to celebrate this special year. In a recent blog, Pitambar Shrestha, Programme Officer of LI-BIRD based in Nawalparasi, described how one such event,  “Planet Nepal 3,” was recently held in Kathmandu, Nepal. Among the many things to visit -art exhibition, acrobatic show, concert, films, farmers’ market-, LI-BIRD put up a community seed bank stall.The stall exhibited 365 local varieties, including 162 of rice, among which the famous Jumli Marshi rice from Jumla. Read the full story at: http://www.libird.org/app/news/view.aspx?record_id=18

New article about community seed banks

Pitambar Shrestha, Gea Galluzzi, Bhuwon Sthapit and Ronnie Vernooy recently published an article about the multiple functions and services of community seed banks, based on a study of community seed banks around the world. You can download the article freely from the journal Resources.

Vernooy, R.; Sthapit, B.; Galluzzi, G.; Shrestha, P. 2014. The multiple functions and services of community seed banks. Resources. Resources 3, 636-656. Available from: http://www.mdpi.com/2079-9276/3/4/636

“Resilient seed systems: tools and techniques for climate change adaptation”

Giving farmers better access to crop and crop varietal diversity will strengthen their capacity to adapt to climate change. Climate and crop modeling tools are increasingly used to project the adaptive capacity of a given crop to the expected changes in climate. The results of these modeling exercises can be used to design strategies to access and use crops and crop varieties that are better adapted to future climate-changes in specific sites. Researchers, genebank managers and farmers could then attempt to gain access to potentially useful plant genetic resources through the multilateral system of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture. Once obtained, they could evaluate these new plant genetic resources in farmers’ fields.

(Photo: R.Vernooy)

(Photo: R.Vernooy)

Bioversity International is assisting Bhutanese and Nepali research and development agencies to design and implement a comprehensive capacity building strategy to access and use plant genetic resources in the context of climate change adaptation. The workshop “Resilient seed systems: tools and techniques for climate change adaptation,” held in Thimpu, November 26-28, 2013, aimed to strength the capacity to integrate climate modeling in crop improvement strategies. Topics covered were: identification of farmers’ perceptions of climate change; analysis of climate changes and their impact on seed systems; identification of plant genetic resources that have potential to adapt to identified climate changes; mechanisms for the acquisition of plant genetic resources that have potential to adapt to identified climate changes; and planning of field testing of newly acquired plant genetic resources. 20 participants from Bhutan and 8 from Nepal attended the workshop. GIS tools introduced were DIVA-GIS, MaxEnt, and the climate analogue tool. Resource persons were Prem Mathur, Sarika Mittra, Michael Halewood and Ronnie Vernooy.

Photo: R. Vernooy
Photo: R. Vernooy

 

The workshop was hosted by the National Biodiversity Centre (NBC) of the Ministry of Agricutlure and Forests of Bhutan. The national genebank of Bhutan is located at NBC. A workshop news link can found here: http://www.bbs.bt/news/?p=34226

 

Visiting the NBC. (Photo: R. Vernooy)

Visiting the NBC. (Photo: R. Vernooy)

GRPI2 mid-term review workshop report available

GRPI2 mid term review workshop report

Report of the GRPI2 mid-term review workshop

The project “strengthening national capacities to implement the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture” (ITPGRFA) or GRPI2 recently underwent an external mid-term review. A workshop with the external evaluators and project partners from Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Rwanda, Uganda, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Bhutan, Nepal and University of Illinois at Chicago, was held at Bioversity International headquarters, Rome, 16-19 July 2013.

The report of the workshop is available from Bioversity International. It summarizes progress made by Bioversity and partners and proposes next steps in project implementation.

Some photos from the workshop (credit: E. Clancy/Bioversity International):

GRPI2 mid term review meeting GRPI2 mid term review meeting GRPI2 mid term review meeting GRPI2 mid term review meeting

New book: Community seed banks in Nepal

In Nepal, community seed banks have a long and rich history. Supported in particular by a number of non-government organizations and more recently, also by government agencies, they can be found across the country from the lowland terai to the high hill areas and from east to west. The latest count puts the number of active community seed banks at 115. See, for an example, the story about the Jogimara community seed bank.

Co-editor Pashupati Chaudary presents the new book. Photo: Ronnie Vernooy

Co-editor Pashupati Chaudhary presents the new book. Photo: Ronnie Vernooy

A new book published by LI-BIRD in collaboration with Nepalese partner agencies and Bioversity International, documents and reflects on the contributions of community seed banks to the conservation and sustainable use of agricultural biodiversity. The various contributions discuss conceptual, practical and policy issues concerning the establishment and management of community seed banks. Lessons learned from the experiences in Nepal will be useful for community seed banks globally. The book can be downloaded for free from the websites of LI-BIRD and Bioversity International.

Adapting to climate change: training workshop for teams of Bhutan and Nepal

By Pashupati Chaudhary, LI-BIRD, Nepal

Agrobiodiversity plays a pivotal role in securing food and nutrition and enhancing resilience of agriculture to climate change. As the climate is becoming more erratic and unpredictable than in the past, it has become increasingly difficult to properly manage agrobiodiversity to sustainably produce food. One of the challenges is the lack of scientific knowledge to predict climate dynamics in particular regions. Another challenge is to develop and deploy crop varieties that are adapted to changing climatic conditions. Climate Analogue Tool (CAT), a recently developed tool by partners of the Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) programme is a remarkable breakthrough in tackling this problem. CAT can identify a) future climate conditions of a particular location and sites that currently resemble these conditions (b) locations that currently have or in the future will have similar climate conditions, and c) locations that in the future will have current climate conditions of a particular place. Based on careful analyses done using the Climate Analogue Tool and supported by data from actual conditions in farmers’ fields, scientists can identify possible appropriate plant genetic resources, deploy suitable varieties, and develop new varieties for specific locations of interest.

Recently, the Genetic Resources Policy Initiative 2 project, led by Bioversity International, organized a three-day long training workshop on Climate Analogue Tools in order to enhance skills of Nepal and Bhutan project staff in analyzing, interpreting and presenting climate data. 18 scientists, managers, and development professionals representing government organizations, national research programs, gene banks and non-governmental organizations of both countries participated in the training that was facilitated by Bioversity International scientists.  Continue reading

Waking up: the experience of the Jogimara community seed bank

Jogimara community seed bank management team with the authors of the story from Bioversity International and LI-BIRD

“For a long time we were asleep, but today we are active in the conservation of plant genetic resources,” said Hariram Khatiwada, the president of the Jogimara community seed bank, Nepal.

Ronnie Vernooy (Bioversity International) and Pitambar Shrestha (LI-BIRD) write about the experience of the seed bank. Read more.

National inception workshop in Nepal

Report by Devendra Gauchan and Ronnie Vernooy, photos by Ronnie Vernooy

A one day national Genetic Resource Policy Initiative (GRPI) 2 inception workshop was jointly organized by the Nepal Agricultural Research Council (NARC), the Ministry of Agricultural Development (MoAD) and Local Initiatives for Biodiversity, Research and Development (LI-BIRD)  with the  support of  Bioversity International on 18 June, 2012 at NARI-Hall, NARC, Kathmandu, Nepal. The workshop was attended by 65 participants representing government, NGOs, INGOs, farmer organizations, and Bioversity International. Presentations covered the ITPGRFA and its relevance for Nepal, results and insights from the first phase of the Genetic Resources Policy Initiative, the progress made to date by the phase 2 of the Genetic Resources Policy Initiative, a synthesis of the first national workshop on Community Seed Banks (held in Pokhara June 14-15), an update on the Nepalese Access and Benefit Sharing and the Plant Variety Protection / Farmers’ Rights bills, and commentary on the ITPGRFA by two farmer delegates and by staff of two non-government organizations. Presentations were followed by Question & Answers. Several journalists covered the workshop. They interviewed Devendra Gauchan and Madan Bhatta (NARC), who organized and facilitated the event, about the ITPGRFA and the project activities in Nepal.

Building on the results on the inception workshop, on June 19, the GRPI 2  National Project Management Committee met for one day to review the 5 core themes of the GRPI 2 project, discuss policy development and research activities and identify teams and leaders for each theme and sub-theme. Ronnie Vernooy (Bioversity International) presented the global overview of the GRPI 2 project and provided inputs on the implementation of core themes and sub-themes of the project.