seeds

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'Doomsday Vault' Sees Its First Withdrawal

Spurred by the Syrian civil war

(Newser) - The "Doomsday Vault" just got its first bit of doomsday press: coverage of its first-ever withdrawal of seeds. Since 2008, the vault has sat on a Norwegian island in the Svalbard archipelago, 800 miles from the North Pole where the soil is always frozen. It's a place so... More »

Feds: We Have a Way to Fix Land After Disasters

Authorities say it will make damaged land more resilient

(Newser) - Federal authorities announced a plan today to produce massive quantities of seeds from native plants that can be quickly planted to help land recover from natural disasters such as wildfires and hurricanes. The program will make landscapes more resilient and healthier, especially Western rangelands where massive wildfires have been an... More »

'Doomsday Vault' Gets First Tree Seeds

Spruce and pine among new collection added to Svalbard Global Seed Vault

(Newser) - The " Doomsday Vault " sits on an Arctic Island, quietly helping to protect our future. At first, it mostly collected and stored food crops, but it recently got its first shipment of tree seeds, Wired reports. Norway spruce and Scots pine are, of course, not much of a meal,... More »

'Doomsday Vault' Gets Sizable Birthday Present

Sleep easy tonight: Key miso ingredient is now safe

(Newser) - Earth is now slightly better prepared for an agricultural apocalypse: The "Doomsday Vault" is 20,000-species stronger as of this week— its sixth birthday . A new wave of seed varieties were deposited that hail from more than 100 countries and represent a "sort of winter Olympics of crop... More »

Chinese Spy Stole Iowa Corn Seeds: Feds

FBI tracked alleged corporate spy through corn fields

(Newser) - Corporate espionage ... in an Iowa cornfield? Federal agents caught an alleged Chinese spy last week trying to smuggle highly valuable "inbred" cord seeds out of the country, prosecutors say. Mo Hailong is accused of stealing the seeds from fields in Illinois and Iowa and trying to evade FBI agents... More »

Farmer, 75, Takes on Monsanto

Soybean seed case hits Supreme Court this week

(Newser) - Vernon Hugh Bowman, a 75-year-old Indiana farmer, is taking on agribusiness heavyweight Monsanto in a case hitting the Supreme Court tomorrow. Monsanto says Bowman, who has been using Monsanto's soybean seeds happily for years, is infringing its patents when he plants a second crop of soybeans each year. The... More »

Seed Shortage Buries Hopes for Record Corn Crop

Corn prices may hit record high this year

(Newser) - American farmers had been planning the biggest corn planting since World War II this spring, but they're being thwarted by a seed shortage. Drought conditions in the Midwest and Great Plains last year have caused what dealers in the corn belt say is the biggest shortage of top-quality seeds... More »

Latest Culprit in E. coli Crisis: Egyptian Seeds

And contaminated ones may still be out there: officials

(Newser) - A new culprit has emerged in the deadliest E. coli outbreak in recorded history: Egyptian fenugreek seeds. Experts had already tracked the crisis to sprouts ; now, “tracing back is progressing and has thus far shown that fenugreek seeds imported from Egypt either in 2009 and/or 2010 are implicated” in... More »

Monsanto Contracts Strangle Competition: Report

Licenses forbid mixing Monsanto genes with competitors'

(Newser) - Monsanto, the country’s dominant seed business, is squeezing competitors with stringent licensing agreements that protect its incredibly dominant position in the industry. Monsanto’s licenses prevent companies from breeding plants that contain both Monsanto’s genes and those of competitors, an AP investigation reveals, effectively locking competitors out of... More »

Birdfeeding Changes Evolution

Free lunch rocks birds' futures

(Newser) - Darwin never made allowances for birdfeeders, but modern-day scientists have discovered that giving feathered friends a helping hand can have profound evolutionary consequences. Filling up birdfeeders with seeds and suet can convince birds to hang around for the free lunch, rather than take off of their migratory routes, researchers have... More »

Invest in Gardens, Where Yields Make Wall St. Blush

25-to-1 return includes benefits 'that, literally, money can’t buy,' seed-seller says

(Newser) - With the economic outlook darkening, there’s still one good investment that will help you weather the downturn, George Ball writes in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution: a garden. The “astonishing garden-grown return on investment is not modern-day speculative sleight-of-hand, but real, tangible and fungible,” the chairman of the Burpee... More »

An Other-Worldly Brew on Tap

Japanese brewery to craft beer whose barley comes from space-traveling seeds

(Newser) - Want to try a heavenly lager? Come November, you might get a chance. Japan's Sapporo Breweries is harvesting barley this weekend from seeds that spent 5 months aboard the International Space Station, the AP reports. It then plans to brew 100 bottles of space beer, though it hasn't figured out... More »

'Doomsday' Seed Vault to Open

Norwegian project will house all known crop species

(Newser) - The North Pole is no Fertile Crescent, but it will house collections of the world's crop seeds in a doomsday vault that will open tomorrow, AFP reports. The vault, built on Norwegian territory, contains three cold chambers that can hold a total of 4.5 million seed samples—twice the... More »

Norway Builds Doomsday Vault for World Seeds

Site beneath Arctic mountain will preserve all essential crops

(Newser) - Norway has built a giant vault under an Arctic mountain, where it will preserve seeds from 21 of the world's essential crops in case disaster strikes. The so-called doomsday vault will eventually store 4.5 million seeds from crops such as wheat and rice to use in the wake of... More »

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