Seed systems and farmers' seed choices: The case of maize in the Peruvian Amazon

Per M. Stromberg, Unai Pascual, Mauricio R. Bellon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations


This paper analyzes how local seed system institutions support seed diversity, itself a requirement for agrobiodiversity maintained on-farm. The paper focuses on maize seed diversity in the central Peruvian Amazon. Using household and community level data from three different cultural groups from the central Peruvian Amazon, empirical results show the importance of collective action and the mediating role of ethnicity in the functioning of informal seed systems that in turn affect farmers' choices regarding conservation of seed diversity. This implies that policies are needed to protect the relatively open seed exchanges of such local practices as a way to sustain on-farm agrobiodiversity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)539-553
Number of pages15
JournalHuman Ecology
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Agrobiodiversity
  • Collective action
  • Ethnicity
  • Peru

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology
  • Anthropology
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science


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