Ensuring Genetic Diversity

In this story, our team visited Randolf and Marty in the beautiful alpine resort of Wanaka. They’ve immigrated here from North America and they show us their small home farm in the middle of a subdivision, explaining how taking control of your own food is completely possible even in an urban setting. They’ve even caught the attention of their neighbours, who appreciate the benefits of local food!

As her grandkids move back to the neighbourhood, Helen Dew from Carterton is making plans to inspire the next generation of local food fans. Helen reckons that after 58 years of gardening the same quarter-acre section, there’s still room for more! She inspires us to turn our back yard garden into an anchor for community involvement, sharing some seed-saving tips and explaining just how important it is to her. As a key figure in the living economies movement, Helen knows more than most about the importance of community resilience.

In this extended interview heritage gardener Derek Craig talks about the loss of genetic diversity of fruit grown in New Zealand in the last 50-years and discusses how the commercialisation of food production has reduced nutritional benefits from fruit, and divorced many people from the knowledge of where their food comes from. However he points out that hope can be found in community groups and families that are rediscovering the value of growing their own food together, locally.
Join Mark Christensen as he introduces us to this heritage variety of apple that is fast becoming a favourite around the country. Mark and friends were out for a drive one day when they came across a century old apple tree. They had one bite and the rest is history. Mark says the apple is delicious, great for cooking and disease resistant. An international study put it at the top of the list for its high-levels of natural flavinoids, which have 'anti-cancer' properties. Mark is based is Wanganui where he runs a heritage nursery and is the research director of the Central Tree Crops Research Trust. They have more research and information on the Monty's Surprise apple and other projects on their website. http://www.treecropsresearch.org/

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The Institute of Earthcare Education Aotearoa
Tui, No 211 McShane Rd,
Wainui Bay, Takaka 7183
Registered Charitable Trust
Personal donations qualify for a 33% Tax Rebate
Charities Commission reg # is CC45548
Our IRD No is: 77-957-669

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