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Crop wild relatives – A manual of in situ conservation
Edited by Danny Hunter and Vernon Heywood
Published by Earthscan
2011, 414pp, ISBN 978 1 84971 179 1 (Pb), £29.99
Crop wild relatives (CRW) are a vital source of genetic variation, and will be increasingly important as plant breeders strive to meet the challenges of a changing climate. However, despite widespread publicity of their importance, a recent survey published in Science revealed that there was no decrease in the rate of biodiversity loss between 1970 and 2010.
This comprehensive volume is the first in a new series of Issues in agricultural biodiversity, a joint project from Earthscan and Bioversity International, and provides practical guidance for CWR conservation worldwide. The book reads easily – a tribute to the authors and their editors – and numerous case studies indicate the urgent need for action in fields, forests and pasture lands. They also illustrate how the need for CWR conservation has been presented successfully to rural people, enabling them to implement action plans and transform their own lives and livelihoods in the process.