Reclaim the Seeds is an event during which the exchange of information and seeds is combined with discussions on political themes and practical workshops. The goal is to involve more people in the movement towards agriculture biodiversity and robust, sustainable food production. Reclaim the Seeds contributes directly to this by encouraging the exchange of rare and special varieties.
Reclaim the Seeds began as a protest against the new EU seed legislation in 2010. Today, the focus is more on resistance against patents on crops and on supporting a climate neutral, 'fossil free' agriculture. The programme also covers other practical, theoretical and political topics related to agriculture.
Many Reclaim the Seeds festivals during the first months of 2019!
Success! We are pleased to announce a number of seed exchanges!
Saturday 2 February 2019, Oudenaarde (BE): Reclaim the Seeds - 'kiemen van verzet' / 'sprouting resistance'
Big companies and European seed legislation threaten the diversity in our gardens and on our plates. Industry largely determines what we eat and what we sow. Hybrid seeds mainly yield profit for seed companies. How do open pollinated varieties fit into our gardens and farms? Velt, the Association for Ecological Living and Gardening, is promoting open pollinated varieties. Every year, this active group manages to drum up an impressive list of stalls and provides a number of good lectures and workshops.
More information: https://beweegt.velt.be/zadenwerkgroep/2822/inplanning
Saturday 9 February 2019, Beuningen: Relcaim the Seeds
The ecological rural community Hof van Wezel will host a seedswap. There will be as well workshops, live music, food and drinks.
More info on Facebook
Address: Ficarystraat 11, Beuningen. Start 14:00 hr.
Saturday 9 March 2019, Drachten: Northern Seed Network - 'zaaien met pit'
The northern provinces continued fanatically after Reclaim the Seeds in Groningen took place in 2014. There is a seed fair with a workshop programme every second Saturday in March, and this year is already the first lustrum! It all takes place in Drachten.
More information: http://noordelijkzadennetwerk.nl
Saturday 23 and Sunday 24 March 2019, Amsterdam: Reclaim the Seeds
Last year was the first Reclaim the Seeds at the Fruittuin van West farm. Despite the extremely cold and icy weather, the weekend attracted many participants. This year there will be more heated covered space and a more extensive market. With another critical and interesting workshop programme, this will be a good old fashioned Reclaim the Seeds.
More information: http://www.reclaimtheseeds-amsterdam.nl
Contact address: email@example.com
Saturday 30 March 2019, Wageningen: Reclaim the Seeds
Three years ago, Reclaim the Seeds took place in Wageningen parallel to the Food Otherwise conference. Now, Boerengroep is again taking the lead with a regional seed exchange at Hoge Born. Nearby at Droevendaal Farm there will be some activities related to food forests.
More info on www.boerengroep.nl and a Facebook event.
Saturday 18 May 2019, Bergen (North Holland), Reclaim the Seeds
You can also exchange your seedlings a little later in the season. The well-known stall of TuinJoop will also be present in Ecodorp Bergen.
If you want a stall or want to come help you can contact firstname.lastname@example.org
At the moment we can not say much about the size of these Reclaim the Seeds events, so please keep following developments. The coming months will provide more clarity about the locations, stalls and workshop programmes. Because seeds, special crops and biodiversity are currently very important and popular, we expect that all of these festivals will attract many participants. But a small-scale, regional seed exchange is also very valuable.
Of course there are more possibilities to exchange seeds. For instance:
- Saturday 16 February 2019 in Rotterdam. Reclaim the Seeds took place here last year, and this year seeds can be exchanged at the five-year anniversary festival of Velt Rotterdam.
- Saturday 16 March 2019 in Boekel: Groenmoesmarkt (green market).
If you know about other seed exchanges, please let us know. We will try to provide a comprehensive oversight on this website .
The earlier message from the 'old' core group of Reclaim the Seeds that we no longer have time to organise a large seed festival was clearly successful. Various people have responded, sometimes offering support and often with concrete suggestions and offers to help. Thank you for this!
Last year there have been Reclaim the Seeds events in Leuven, Rotterdam and Amsterdam. A report in English is lacking, you take a look at the report in Dutch though. From the seed fair in Nijmegen in 2017 you can read the report in English:
A successful Reclaim the Seeds 2017 in Nijmegen and Lent
The annual seed fair took place in De Vasim in Nijmegen on Saturday March 4th. De Vasim is an old spinning mill on the Waal river that now functions as a cultural breeding hub. Come join us in exchanging a wide variety of seeds and cutting as well as ideas, information, and useful skills. We welcome you to bring any seeds or cuttings to exchange along with the myriad of old, local, non-hybrid, and special seeds, bulbs, and cuttings.
During the market there will be talks and workshops about saving seeds, permaculture, seed networks, edible peenial plants, the impact of Bayer/Monsanto and other large seed companies, and other subjects. The overarching theme of the day will be regarding the issues of seed patenting.
The next day, Sunday March 5th, everybody is invited to lend a hand at starting an edible garden in Lent. In this northern part of Nijmegen two ecological communities IEWAN and Eikpunt have recently been completed and now the inhabitants are going to transform most of the public green area to become edible. There will also be some excursions to biodiverse projects in the surroundings.
Reclaim the Seeds is an annual event, each year in a different part of the Netherlands, where exchanging seeds and information is combined with discussions about political themes and practical workshops. It started as a protest against new European seed laws, but now the main goal is to involve more people in the struggle against patents in plants and against the ever increasing power of large agricultural corporations. With the event we contribute to the upkeep of agricultural biodiversity and a robust, sustainable agriculture.
The overarching theme of the day will be regarding the issues of seed patenting.
The past 5 editions were a success; many interested people joined in and the workshops and discussions were well attended. Let us reclaim the seeds!