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26 Feb 2016 | KSL

Sustainable Management of Local Varieties in Kailash

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A local crop diversity fair in Khar VDC of Api-Nampa Conservation area of Kailash landscape of Nepal was organised at a local level to raise public awareness on good management of local crop genetic resources, identify rare and unique species, promote seed exchanges, storage and the support sharing of traditional knowledge.

The fair was attended by more than 2000 individuals from Khar and nearby village development committees (VDC). Local Development Officer, Mr. Sahdev raymajhi  from District Development Committee (DDC) said local crops and products on display and awards encouraged farming communities of the importance of conserving and managing greater farm diversity. Representatives from women groups said the diversity fair provided them a chance to learn about different crop varieties, exchange knowledge, skills and materials. It also helped create market linkage with business people and identified people who are growing different varieties of crop species.

Nine women’s groups displayed their crop diversity. Three women’s group prepared local food items from crops on verge of extinction — Amaranthus (locally known as Marse) and Fox Tail millet (locally known as Kaguno). A team of evaluators were formed as the panelist who visited each stalls. A set of criteria (number of crop diversity displayed, traditional varieties, unique and rare species, knowledge and information and display) for the evaluation was shared and discus with all the representatives of women’s groups in advance. During the fair, five women’s groups were awarded cash prizes up to NRs 45,000. All the participating women groups received the certificate for their participation.

The event improved the understanding and increased awareness on the value of local crop resources and helped strengthen traditional knowledge system; sensitisation of wide range of stakeholders and ultimately will lead to promote conservation, crop diversity for seed production, food safety and product marketing.

The event was organised by the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD), District Agriculture Development Office (DADO), Darchula; Api Nampa Conservation Area (ANCA); ANCA management council and RECAST.

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