Pollination is essential in ecosystem services as well as in the maintenance of global agrodiversity. Pollinators are essentials in sustaining food, nutrition, medicinal and cultural securities. In absence of pollination, a range of symmetrical and asymmetrical relationships between plants and pollinators tend to be influenced negatively, which in turn would have direct consequences on the health of the biological reserve. Pollinators such as bees, birds and bats affect 35% of the world’s crop production, increasing outputs of 75% of the leading food crops worldwide. Indigenous communities have developed by the time different practices related on pollination that play a vital role in preserving agrobiodiversity, being central for their wellbeing and characterized by an high cultural value, due to the generational transmission of their traditional knowledge.
Keeping this in mind, pollinators were recognized by the Indigenous Partnership as extremely important to biodiversity and hence it supported the creation of a pollination network which brings together a variety of organisations as Keystone Foundation (India), Slow Food International (Italy), Kivulini Trust (Kenya) and Ogiek Peoples Development Project (Kenya). In this framework, three meetings in Kotagiri, Ogiek and Nairobi have been organized to facilitate ideas exchanges and to reinforce cooperation among the partners.
Later, other events such as International meetings with local communities and indigenous food festivals as part of the Slow Food movement took on as efforts of the network which then organically groomed a space for the Pollinators Network initiative with the support of FAO. FAO is supporting initiatives on pollination services and focus studies on pollination deficits in many parts of the world, using criteria as floral and insects density and recognizing, through a Plan of Action, the importance of Indigenous Peoples knowledge on pollination in biodiversity preservation. Through this plan FAO is highlighting the crucial role that indigenous peoples should play in proposing best practices useful to assessing pollination deficits. An FAO’s pollinator deficit protocol training was conducted in Community Production Centre in Bangalapadigai village (India) on August 2013.
To learn more…
The Indigenous Pollinators Network (Platform for Agrobiodiversity Research)
Policy mainstreaming on biodiversity and ecosystem services with a focus on pollination (FAO Publication)
NESFAS Reports 2013- 2014
Platform for Agrobiodiversity website
“Building the science-knowledge-policy interface in pollination services through facilitating the contribution of indigenous people and local communities” by Robert Leo