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Southeast Farmers Say More Organic Seed Research and Education Needed

Organic Seed Alliance (OSA) has released findings from an organic seed survey conducted in the Southeast region of the U.S. Findings point to enormous interest among farmers and other agricultural professionals in strengthening seed systems in the Southeast to address the needs of the organic community. 

Working with regional partners, OSA developed an online survey to assess organic seed systems in the Southeast and identify collaborative opportunities to expand and improve these systems. The survey, which closed last month, collected responses from more than 2,200 individuals, including nearly 500 farmers. The following findings are drawn from these farmer responses: 

"Strengthening organic seed systems at the regional level demands a deep understanding of the opportunities within the community involved, and a comprehensive approach to addressing their needs," says Jared Zystro of Organic Seed Alliance. "We know through past experience that such an approach involves building public-private partnerships, fostering participatory plant breeding projects, and bolstering seed skills at the farm level."

Based on the overwhelming response to the survey and the amount of interest in organic seed systems in the Southeast, a project committee made up of farm organizations, universities, and farmers is planning upcoming work in this region. Contact Jared Zystro at jared@seedalliance.org if you live in the Southeast and want to get involved.

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