Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 538895
Title Plant breeding and diversity : A troubled relationship?
Author(s) Louwaars, Niels P.
Source Euphytica 214 (2018)7. - ISSN 0014-2336
DOI https://doi.org/10.1007/s10681-018-2192-5
Department(s) Law and Governance
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2018
Keyword(s) Biodiversity policy - Diversity bottleneck - Genetic diversity - Genetic resources - Multiline - Nagoya Protocol - Participatory plant breeding - Plant breeding - Seed regulations - Trait breeding
Abstract

Plant breeding collects, induces and rearranges genetic diversity followed by selection. Breeding may contribute to diversity in farmers’ fields or significantly reduce it. History has numerous examples of both. The diversity of many crops have gone through domestication, dispersal and modernization bottlenecks. Between these major decreasing processes, diversity has picked up through different evolutionary processes, and plant breeding affected by policies. Major negative effects of plant breeding on diversity have been recorded following the modernization bottleneck, but alternative breeding strategies have come up as well, both in the formal system and in the interphase between formal and farmers’ seed systems. Multiline breeding and participatory plant breeding are introduced as examples to also analyse effects of current developments in technology and policy. This paper intends to shed some light on the questions: how will current developments in technology and policy affect crop genetic diversity? Are we heading for a new bottleneck—either a molecular or a policy bottleneck, or a combination of both? Or could the future become more diverse? We look at the relationship between breeding, policies, and crop genetic diversity in farming systems with a birds-eye view. Notably because of current policy trends we warn for a new diversity bottleneck.

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