The Cebu Seed Savers Officers recently held their bi-monthly meeting, and it was a gathering filled with updates and plans to further their mission. The meeting brought together key partners, including Pestales, CONFFFED Secretary, and CONFFFED Officers, underlining the collaborative spirit at the heart of their work.

One of the primary objectives of the meeting was to update and plan for upcoming events, particularly the Nourish Events. Additionally, the officers discussed their proposed strategic planning for November and explored the possibility of a visit by GSS Fellows Mandy and Marissa to Cebu, enhancing the interconnectivity of their efforts.

One significant highlight was the Policy Advocacy Workshop, where two important policies related to food security were drafted. The first was on Organic Farming, with active participation from Bebs Embalzado. Bebs shared that the workshop had revealed various tools and techniques in organic farming that were previously unknown to her team, such as JADAM and others. This shared knowledge promises to enhance the quality and sustainability of their farming practices.

The second policy, Seed Sovereignty, garnered attention from GSSP Director Hal Atienza and Anita of BASS. Bebs shared a valuable insight from the workshop – the “Elevator Approach.” This approach focuses on engaging government officials quickly and effectively, even in an elevator ride, to advocate for their policy agenda and potentially schedule further meetings.

Crops Monitoring and Seeds Updating were also key topics of discussion during the meeting. Officers reported on the status of crops on their farms and shared insights about seed processing methods used by major seed companies. This information could be crucial as the Cebu Seed Savers consider venturing into seed sales to the public.

One pressing issue raised was the declining germination rates of stored seeds. The officers contemplated the reasons behind this issue and discussed potential solutions to ensure the quality of their seeds.

The meeting also shed light on the upcoming visit of interns Mandy and Marissa. The Pestales team expressed their enthusiasm for hosting them. Suggestions were made for their stay, emphasizing the importance of an extended visit to enable farm visits and deep immersion in their work. Practical arrangements for their accommodation were also discussed, demonstrating the warm hospitality of the Cebu Seed Savers Officers and their commitment to nurturing the next generation of seed savers.