Anyone who recalls the vegetable garden of their grandparents knows that there were far more vegetable varieties in the past, with a much more delicious taste, than those found today in supermarkets, albeit organic.
Simply comparing the early 20th century's seed trader catalogues with today's leads to observing this dramatic drop in vegetable biodiversity, as is in cereal or fruit biodiversity.
Such an evolution mainly results from the fact that seed production has become a powerful and concentrated industry, aiming to produce standardized seeds, adapted to mass production and marketing. It therefore lost interest in small "niche" markets of local varieties, bound to a region, traditions, a climate, a culinary culture.
This also results from the fact that researchers working on such issues are – with a few exceptions – focused on genetic engineering techniques, while traditional selection and cross-breeding practices are often more appropriate in creating local varieties useful to organic farming.
This is surely why, in the past few years, anyone unsatisfied with this evolution has searched for, found and recultivated old public-domain varieties while they still existed and were accessible. Moreover, our Foundation has often supported the actors of this revival of old varieties, whether as their producers or distributors.
We however believe that beyond maintaining old varieties free of rights, and their natural evolution, now is the time for home gardeners and professional vegetable growers to "regain control" and to focus on creating for themselves the new varieties they require, and which are not supplied by the industry. Because they need them, but also because it is time for everyone to restore control over our lives and freedom to carry out our activities according to our own choices.
Thereby only will particular emerging needs related to evolutions in terms of culture, food, agronomy, climate, etc. be met, as well as to local necessities of specific areas, or simply the natural need for joyful creativity and beauty.
We are of course referring to original creations, free of rights, and obtained through organic farming.
We believe that this creative revival is not only possible, but also accessible to everyone. All past variety creations were made by "amateurs", at a time when genetic engineering did not exist... It is simply a matter of getting back on that path where we left it a few dozen years ago, although using the basic rules of plant genetics in order not to waste time and to better direct the creation work.