After watching this Australian Premiere 'Seeds of Time', I sat a while and pondered over what I had just experienced and what the film had opened my eyes up to. Let's face it, how many of us wake up consciously thinking about seeds? About agriculture? Or the fact that without it, the very survival of the human race is at stake? Thank goodness for amazing men like Cary Fowler, Executive Director 2005 - 2012, Global Corp Diversity Trust who's the driving force behind getting a global seed vault (Svalbard Global Seed Vault) up and running. Passionate about his mission and having always been enamoured by big causes, you could say he was driven to bring this global issue to the world's arena for everyone to sit up and take notice and take notice we must. After all, everything else must surely pale into insignificance when our very lives depends on playing our part, getting involved and doing something about it.
"If you can look into the seeds of time and say which grain will grow and which will not, speak then to me" - Macbeth, Act 1 Scene III
Biodiversity - the variety of plant and animal life in the world or in a particular habitat, a high level of which is usually considered to be important and desirable. That's what we're talking about. A collection of a variety of seeds that gives us a future. Climate change has been the biggest challenge agriculture has faced and when these extremes happen, we have crop failure, prices go up, the natives get restless and empty bellies bring rising anger. It's strongly correlated to war and civil strikes. Our stockpiles of food are historically low and feeding of the world population is not sustainable at this rate which could result in a catastrophic scale of starvation we cannot imagine. Helping agriculture adapt to climate change is the key. As a global community we need to make an international effort and start organising ourselves to save seeds for agricultural crops. We need this huge variety as we still don't know which ones will adapt and which ones won't.
Throughout the film as we take in the enormity of what we see and hear on the screen, one can't help but notice the cinematography as it sweeps through and captures the images and beauty of amazing places. The Svalbard Global Seed Vault is a miracle to behold. Just imagine the logistics of building it. This storage facility, this seed vault that lies on a snow covered land and under a mountain is where the world unites as one with seeds from all around the globe. It gives us hope that united, we can make a difference in this world.
We follow Cary in this film as he takes us on a journey that makes us realise how long it takes for the world to take notice and to make the necessary changes to save itself. It also shows us how just one person can make a huge difference; imagine for a moment what we can achieve collectively! Since 1903, 93% of known fruit and vegetable varieties have gone extinct, resulting in us having just 10% and under of many varieties. For sustainability we need to adapt crop variety to climate. How do we do that?
Potatoes are the life blood of Peruvians. It's not just food, it's tradition, history, family & culture.
Virtually all domestic crops have wild plants related to them that don't grow in a field. They're the ancestors from which neolithic man around the world selected and developed seeds into crops, hence it's got a very close gender relationship much as wolves to dogs. Through plant breeding we can make sure that crops are better able to withstand the higher temperature that is already with us. This wild relative is extremely useful because it has many of the genes in it that have been bred out of the domesticated variety, like disease resistance, drought tolerance, pest resistance and so on. They're typically tough plants that grow without help from humans.
Luckily for us, even though Cary is not sure why it happened, it dawned on him that agriculture was not ready for the gigantic climate changes. His message to us is clear and something you should experience and hear for yourselves through this film. I hope that I've managed to raise your curiosity and whet your appetite enough for you to take advantage of not only seeing this mind and eye opening film but to see as many of the thought provoking films on offer at the Transitions Film Festival that will hopefully inspire and encourage you to leap into action and get involved.
Cost:$19.50 adult | $16.00 concession. 1) Buy tickets to 4 or more films and receive concession rate to all 2) Present your bike helmet at the box office to receive concession price 3) Present your Sustainable Living Festival BIG TICKET to receive co