Fruits, nuts, leaves, bark, resin and other tree products are excellent sources of food, fibre and other ecosystem services. Many are rich in minerals and vitamins, and tree foods often provide people with a safety net in times of scarcity. Trees can protect the environment in both forests and agricultural landscapes by stabilizing and enriching the soil, drawing water and nutrients from deep in the ground and carbon from the air, providing fodder and shelter for livestock and create micro-climates. Yet the lack of quality tree-planting materials that are suited to location and purpose poses serious constraints to tree planting initiatives worldwide.
CIFOR-ICRAF is developing genetic resources to safeguard tree diversity, domesticate tree species, and provide growers with the best-suited planting material for their particular needs. Through collaborative research and development, we work with relevant institutions and networks to help boost the availability and access of quality seeds and materials, so that the right tree can be planted in the right place, for the right purpose.