NM Reps Push To Preserve Native American Seeds

Dec 28, 2013

Credit Courtesy: USDA

  Two members of New Mexico's congressional delegation are pushing for the preservation of Native American seeds.

Legislation introduced by U.S. Reps. Michelle Lujan Grisham and Ben Ray Lujan would focus on those seeds that are used for cultural, religious, medicinal, ceremonial and agricultural purposes.

Under the measure, tribes could get grants from the U.S. Department of Agriculture for research, education and training programs aimed at protecting the purity of Native American seeds.

The legislation would also allow for the construction of seed storage facilities.

At Tesuque Pueblo in northern New Mexico, Tribal Gov. Mark Mitchell says environmental contaminants and other factors are threatening the integrity of the community's native seeds.

The legislation has been referred to the House Agriculture Committee.

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