In recognition of 40 years’ dedication to saving and sharing heirloom seeds, Iowa Governor Terry Branstad has signed a proclamation announcing that July, 2015 is officially Seed Savers Exchange Month across the state of Iowa. In the proclamation, which was signed at the state capitol in Des Moines on June 10, Governor Branstad encourages “all Iowans to honor and celebrate this occasion through appropriate festivities and observances” and commends the staff of Seed Savers Exchange (SSE) for the “diligent efforts and undying passion by which they complete this important work to preserve our rich heritage.”
Governor Branstad visited Heritage Farm, just north of Decorah, in April. Seed Savers Exchange will commemorate this occasion at their annual Conference & Campout, to be held at Heritage Farm July 17-19.
Below is the text of the official proclamation:
WHEREAS, for generations, Iowans have cultivated gardens, by tending their plants and sowing the land with seed saved from the previous year’s harvest or shared between family, neighbors, friends and local seed cooperatives; and
WHEREAS, since 1975, Seed Savers Exchange has endeavored to preserve and promote the use of heirloom and heritage varieties by enlisting farmers and gardeners to join this effort to share and protect these species for future generations; and
WHEREAS, the tremendous work in documenting, testing and cultivating these heirloom seeds and plants, along with the recording of the histories and family stories that accompany these seeds are acknowledged through the annually published Seed Savers Exchange Yearbook and the tireless labor of the Seed Savers Exchange staff; and
WHEREAS, for the past 40 years, Seed Savers Exchange has worked vigorously to facilitate what has now become the nation’s largest seed swap, to operate a seed bank at Heritage Farm near Decorah, Iowa, to educate others on how to save and share their seeds, and to distribute heirloom and heritage seeds to customers through their catalog services:
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Terry E. Branstad, Governor of the State of Iowa, do hereby recognize the
40TH ANNIVERSARY OF SEED SAVERS EXCHANGE
and do hereby proclaim July, 2015 as
SEED SAVERS EXCHANGE MONTH
in Iowa and encourage all Iowans to honor and celebrate this occasion through appropriate festivities and observances while recognizing the staff of the Seed Savers Exchange for their diligent efforts and undying passion by which they complete this important work to preserve our rich heritage and encourage others to join this noble endeavor.
Seed Savers Exchange is a non-profit organization located in Decorah, Iowa, with a mission to conserve and promote America's culturally diverse but endangered garden and food crop heritage for future generations by collecting, growing, and sharing heirloom seeds and plants.