Western society (at least in the United States) has gone from eating hundreds, if not thousands, of different varieties of vegetables, to the few, standard vegetables found at most dinner tables. The choice is limited because most of our food is grown on large, corporate-owned and monocultural farms. Such a farm would grow, for example, only one or at the most two types of tomatoes, all hybrids designed for high-yield and the ability to be tough enough to fight off disease and travel long distances. Taste and nutrition are not at the top of the corporate goals.
“Heirloom” (non-hybrid vegetables popular before the industrialization of agriculture) seed companies and organizations seek to preserve the original biodiversity, and promote sustainable, organic agriculture with traditional, vegetable, flower and herb seeds, all organic, non-hybrid, and non-genetically modified. Why? Because the foods produced are healthier and tastier. (Have you experienced the difference in taste between an organic heirloom tomato and a long-traveled supermarket tomato?) In the long-run, heirloom produce is more likely to survive and thrive in a changing environment than hybrids.
Organic Seed Alliance
Supporting the ethical stewardship and development of seed.
Seeds of Change
Organic seeds, products and information.