Gaia is delighted that our long-term partner organisation the African Biodiversity Network  (ABN) has been recognised for Outstanding Practice in Agroecology by the World Future Council.

This much deserved award recognises the ABN’s committed work alongside small-scale farmers to revive their seed diversity, as the basis of food sovereignty and climate change resilience.

Gaia helped to found the ABN back in the 1990s and has continued to walk alongside the network as it grew, established a Secretariat, and developed a clear voice on respecting nature, protecting biocultural diversity, and the importance of traditional and indigenous seed and knowledge. Find out more about their work.

“This is a well-deserved honour, and one that I am sure will energize ABN to stay inspired, to keep going, to scale-up, and be true to the ABN values of commitment, courage and tenacity, and goals of ethnic, cultural, spiritual and biological well-being for present and future generations”, says Gaia’s Fiona Wilton. “We are proud to be part of the ABN’s work and history, to have helped sow the seeds of this growing network.”

Press Release- World Future Council. 17/01/2019
Outstanding Practices in Agroecology 2019 Announced

The recognition highlights outstanding practices advancing the transition towards agroecology from the global South. Out of 77 nominations from 44 countries, 15 receive recognitions, including practices from across Africa, Asia and Latin America.

Berlin, 17 January 2019 – 15 outstanding projects, programmes, social enterprises and non-governmental organisations from the Global South promoting sustainable food systems are receiving the first recognition Outstanding Practices in Agroecology 2019, beating 77 nominations from 44 countries. The recognition is organised by the World Future Council (WFC), in collaboration with the start-up Technology for Agroecology in the Global South (TAGS).

On the basis of a World Future Council evaluation report, an international panel of renowned experts decided upon the following 15 best practices to be recognised in Berlin on Friday 18 January, 2019 at the occasion of the International Green Week and the Global Forum for Food and Agriculture 2019:

African Biodiversity Network: Regeneration Through Connecting Seeds with Culture and Nature in Africa

This NGO project works in 11 African countries to revive traditional agroecological farming systems, promoting seed and food sovereignty and regenerating livelihoods. Currently it has 4,640 farmers working on reviving seeds and has revived 470 varieties of seeds.

Read the full press release here…

Quotes from our friends, allies, advisors and others…

“Congratulations on this deserved recognition. It makes me so happy to see ABN’s unique work and approach gets recognised. At last! I think the rest of Africa and beyond can learn the other dimensions that ABN brings to the work of agroecology. This is a great recognition and I hope it encourages you to deepen and spread it.” – Million Belay. Coordinator, Alliance for Food Sovereignty in Africa


“Congratulations on an outstanding achievement. Well done!” – Dr Irwin Friedman, Public Health Physician, HealthPro


“These 15Outstanding Practices in Agroecology 2019 are exemplary in that they empower small-scale food producers, nurture sustainable food systems and promote resilient agricultural practices. I proudly served on the jury of this recognition and call all decision-makers to learn from these unique initiatives”, says Shantanu Mathur, Lead Adviser, Global Engagement and Multilateral Relations Division, International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD).


To address hunger, social inequality, climate change, and biodiversity loss, a transition to sustainable food and agriculture systems is inevitable. This recognition showcases smart solutions that really work for the local people and empower those on whom food security of the Global South relies on: small-scale food producers. The Outstanding Practices in Agroecology 2019 create immediate and real impact and if executed at scale, they can help to considerably transform our food systems,” says Prof. Dr. Franz-Theo Gottwald, Supervisory Board Chairman of the World Future Council.