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July/August 2006

Announcement of a publication

Community diversity seed fairs in Tanzania

Guidelines for seed fairs

Report no 51

This is a publication of the LinKS Project, Gender, biodiversity and local knowledge systems for food security


Community diversity seed fairs are an eye-opener for farmers and for participants coming from outside the rural community. The wealth of crop and variety diversity, coupled with local knowledge of biodiversity management, which is displayed at seed diversity fairs, is impressive. Stakeholders in agriculture often do not know about the diversity of agricultural crops in village settings, and even farmers living in the same rural community may not be well-informed on the wealth of different crop diversity that exists and is available to them. Community diversity seed fairs help to fill this knowledge gap at rural community level.

The FAO-LinKS project (Gender, biodiversity and local knowledge systems for food security) sponsored two studies, in Southern Highlands and Central Tanzania, on local knowledge in relation to management of agrobiodiversity for food security. Following the studies, four community diversity seed fairs were held in 2005. The research teams worked closely together with the rural communities in organizing these seed fairs.

The Gender and Population Division in collaboration with the Plant Genetic Resources Service have prepared simple guidelines for rural communities explaining the main steps how to organize a community diversity seed fair.

This report is divided in two parts: the first part presents experiences made during the four diversity seed fairs and documents crops and crop varieties displayed at these seed fairs. In the second part of the report are the guidelines which explain how to carry out a community diversity seed fair in a simple way.

Click here to view the document.

Please note that the pdf version is divided into multiple files and has internal bookmarks.

For related information, please see:



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