Farming: Genetic erosion
Lost genetic diversityThe widespread use of genetically uniform modern crop varieties has caused agricultural crops to lose about 75% of their genetic diversity in the last century.
Today, just 30 crops account for 90% of calories consumed by people, while 14 animal species account for 90% of all livestock production1.
This lost genetic diversity reduces the potential for modern crops to adapt to, or be bred for, changing conditions – and so directly threatens long-term food security.
1. UNEP (2007) Fourth Global Environment Outlook: Environment for Development Section B: State-And-Trends of the Environment 1987–2007; Chapter 5: Biodiversity