Safeguarding diversity, maximising benefits
Tree fruits, nuts and leaves are often excellent food sources and trees provide a broad range of other products such as medicine, timber and fodder. Many tree foods are rich in minerals and vitamins and act as a ‘food safety net’ in times of scarcity. Trees also 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, and providing shelter for livestock, among other functions.
But the lack of quality tree-planting materials that are suited to location and purpose poses serious constraints to tree-planting initiatives worldwide. That’s why CIFOR-ICRAF is developing genetic resources to safeguard tree diversity, domesticate tree species, and provide tree 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 tree seeds and other tree planting materials, and to provide wide access to information on how to properly manage these planting resources, so that the right tree can be planted in the right place, for the right purpose.