Seed bartering festival in İzmir aims to revive local planting richness
İZMİR – Doğan News Agency
DHA PhotosA seed bartering festival will take place in the Urla district of Turkey’s İzmir province in October, aimed at protecting and reviving endangered seeds and enriching the natural wealth of the region.
The festival will be held on Oct. 4 in the Malgaca market square, giving attendees the chance to exchange local seeds.
Moves to encourage seed exchange between locals began in 2006 in the Torbalı district of İzmir after a law banned the retail of non-registered seeds. Bartering between producers thus became the only solution to keep these seeds active, and the festival in Urla was started by local villagers before expanding over the years.
“The idea that we will exchange if we cannot sell has always been used as a solution by Turkish farmers. Now, the exchange of seeds has turned into a movement of revolt and a wake-up call,” stated the Urla Town Council, which organizes the festival.
The festival was developed after locals in the western Turkish towns of Balıkesir, Fethiye, Bodrum Torbalı, Seferihisar, Salihli and Bornova refused to accept genetically modified plants imported from other countries.