Around the world

The hidden stories of crop diversity are everywhere

Agro-biodiversity is what makes food in different places unique, and it’s also something that ties us all together. Farmers in any region grow crops amid their own special combination of climate, landscape, culture and natural ecosystems – including unwelcome pests and diseases.

These forces overlap to make every place its own puzzle, and the job of the farmer is to solve this puzzle, season after season.

Any crop type that does something a little differently can be useful, and farmers take notice. So as time passes, an interesting thing happens: the building blocks of agriculture move around. A lot. A root that evolved in the South American rainforest ends up growing in fields in Tanzania and Thailand. Middle Eastern grains sprout under Canadian snow. And none of this seems strange. Wherever crops go they put down roots in our lives and cultures, until we start to assume that they were always there.

The hidden stories of crop diversity are everywhere. Under the #CropsInColor campaign, we go out into the world in searching of the countless ways in which crop diversity plays a role in our lives. With support from farmers and chefs, plant breeders and genebank managers, street and market sellers, and everyday people, we celebrate the uniqueness of each region, and the common heritage of what we eat.

This campaign is made possible by the generous support of Corteva Agriscience with additional funding from the Oak Spring Garden Foundation.