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The Safe Seed Pledge

Image: Seed Variety

In 1999, a coalition of nine organic seed companies, led by High Mowing Organic Seeds, drafted a statement about their position on genetically engineered seeds. It became known as the Safe Seed Pledge. Currently more than 70 companies have signed the pledge, ranging from large seed companies to family-owned businesses.

By signing the pledge, seed companies affirm their commitment to seeds that have not been genetically modified. They are committed instead to the idea of protecting and sharing humanity's garden heritage and increasing the genetic diversity available to all of us. The Pledge reads, "Agriculture and seeds provide the basis upon which our lives depend. We must protect this foundation as a safe and genetically stable source for future generations. For the benefit of all farmers, gardeners, and consumers who want an alternative, we pledge that we do not knowingly buy or sell genetically engineered seeds or plants. The mechanical transfer of genetic material outside of natural reproductive methods and between genera, families or kingdoms poses great biological risks as well as economic, political and cultural threats. We feel that genetically engineered varieties have been insufficiently tested prior to public release. More research and testing are necessary to further assess the potential risks of genetically engineered seeds. Further, we wish to support agricultural progress that leads to healthier soils, genetically diverse agricultural ecosystems and ultimately healthy people and communities."

If you would like to see a list of seed companies that have signed the pledge, visit


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