Overview and Timeliness
Organic Seed Alliance is proud to announce a 2023 Policy Platform for Seed, a list of priorities for advancing equitable and resilient seed systems in the next Farm Bill and beyond.
Congress is already working on the 2023 Farm Bill, and this platform provides a roadmap for centering seed as the foundation of a diverse, healthy, and accessible food system. OSA is asking Congress to ensure that seed systems in the United States are:
- Free from corporate control and managed by the people, not the patent holder
- Regionally adapted to help mitigate the impacts of climate change
- Freely shaped by communities of origin
- Contributing to the common good, including public plant breeding and research
- Readily accessible within the public domain
- Helping organic growers meet regulatory requirements and serve their markets
- Free from GMO contamination
Will you help us turn this platform into action? Here are three ways to engage today:
1. Join the growing network of seed policy advocates
Add your name to this list of individuals, organizations, and businesses that support the platform. By adding your name, you will help us demonstrate to Congress a broad base of citizen support for decentralized seed systems that are grounded in the principles of the organic movement.
2. Help us build grassroots power
Share this platform with friends, family, colleagues, and others in your networks and community, and on your social media accounts (view sample messages here).
3. Share your story
If you have a story to share — a direct experience with any of the topics above that may be useful to our campaign — please get in touch!
Join the #LeadWithSeed campaign today!
Summary of the Platform
Check out and share the full platform at this link. A summary is below – click on the policy issue boxes to go deeper.
Seed, Not Greed
Promote fair policies that manage seed as a living natural resource, not a consolidated corporate commodity
Break Up Big Seed
Stop seed industry consolidation by corporate giants to protect the rights of seed growers, plant breeders, and farmers.
Remove Barriers to Seed Saving and Research
Challenge restrictive forms of intellectual property rights (IPR) on seed and promote fair laws and policies through advocacy to Congress, the US Patent and Trademark Office, Federal Trade Commission, and US Department of Agriculture.
Build Capacity, Increase Resilience
Demand inclusive policies that remove barriers, increase participation, and support regional adaptability to build more resilient seed systems.
Confront the Climate Crisis
Promote public plant breeding, decentralized seed systems, Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK), and organic practices as solutions to mitigating the effects of climate change and helping society adapt to these changes and their consequences
Achieve Equitable Participation in Seed Systems
Advocate for policy initiatives that decentralize power in agriculture and advance equity and justice, including increasing access to seed, land, financial resources, information, political standing, and educational and professional trajectories for BIPOC and underfunded, underrepresented, or historically excluded communities. Support policy change that allows these communities to shape traditional and regional foodways beginning with culturally appropriate seed.
Promote the Public Good
Support transparent policies that ensure accountability that public research dollars are spent addressing the needs of farmers, growers, and their communities.
Ensure Public Plant Breeding Supports the Common Good
Advocate for increased, targeted, and diversified public research investments in organic plant breeding and seed initiatives that hold agencies accountable in prioritizing challenges faced by seed producers and establishing community-university partnerships that strengthen the links between public research and grassroots seed movements.
Expand Public Seed Collections
Advocate for adequate funding and management of the National Plant Germplasm System to address the backlog of seed regeneration, protect genetic diversity, and ensure equitable access by growers, breeders, and those working on rematriation as well as prioritizing community of origin seed keepers requesting access to culturally appropriate seeds.
Support Organic Farmers
Advance organic policies that help protect and grow the organic seed supply including enhancing the integrity of the organic label.
Enhance the Integrity of the Organic Label
Strengthen the organic seed requirement, help organic producers meet the organic seed regulation, clarify which plant-breeding methods should be excluded or allowed in organic production, and support the organic seed market and the seed growers who fill this supply.
Address GMO Contamination
Address GMO concerns in the organic and non-GMO seed sector and advocate for strong federal policy reform to level the playing field, promote true “coexistence” between GE and non-GE farming systems, and establish fair compensation for economic and other harms associated with GE contamination.
Support State-Level Seed Initiatives
State-level seed policy can fill gaps at the federal level to strengthen protections for organic and non-GE seed and seed growers