Sowing Revolution: Seed Libraries and the Freedom of Food
Originally published in Acres USA, this article explores the emerging trend of seed libraries in the USA as a revolutionary act of self-reliance in marked opposition to the “corporate-agriculture machine.” Three different seed libraries with representatives at the National Heirloom Exposition are explored. Each adapt different approaches, but the goals are shared: build local self-reliance, seed sovereignty, and transform people’s mindsets from consumers to producers.
BASIL, the first seed library in the nation, is operated out of Berkeley’s Ecology Center. The Hudson Valley Seed Library is organized online, allowing access to a wider diversity of people. Richmond Grows Seed Lending Library, meanwhile, is located in a public library. The pairing of seed libraries is described as a “match made in heaven,” and is increasingly the most common form of seed libraries seen. Seed libraries facilitate in “the reeducation and involvement of the population at large,” while helping people “recognize the crucial link between humanity, the crops that sustain us, and their embattled seeds.”