Seeds of Freedom is a short film that was launched online in 2012 – it charts the story of seed from its roots at the heart of traditional, diversity rich farming systems across the world, to being transformed into a powerful commodity, used to monopolise the global food system.
British actor and UN Food & Agriculture Goodwill Ambassador Jeremy Irons, has put his distinctive voice to the film. “I’m delighted to have been asked to narrate this important film. I think that it carries a critical message, at a critical time. We are on the brink of losing a vast wealth of diversity in our food system, and we’ll lose it to the hands of just a few corporations, who give us only the illusion of choice on our shelves.”
Seeds of Freedom, a collaborative work from The Gaia Foundation and the African Biodiversity Network features interviews with world-renowned environmental commentators and activists including Dr Vandana Shiva, Zac Goldsmith MP, Caroline Lucas MP, Kumi Naidoo, John Vidal, Dr Melaku Worrede and Henk Hobbelink. The films tells the story of how North American farmers have been sued for being contaminated with GM pollen, how GM cotton has driven Indian farmers into spiralling debt, and how, as seed diversity is displaced by corporate seeds, farmers are made increasingly vulnerable to climate change.
The film highlights the extent to which the industrial agricultural system – and genetically modified (GM) seeds in particular – has impacted on the enormous agro-biodiversity evolved by farmers and communities around the world. Seeds of Freedom features the voices of a number of African farmers who have been affected by the introduction of hybrid seeds across the continent, and are concerned about the growing intrusion of GM into Africa’s food system.