Help Save America’s Oldest, Heirloom, Non-GMO Seed House

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By Colleen Vanderlinden
TreeHugger

D. Landreth Seeds is America’s oldest seed company. It was founded in 1784 in Pennsylvania, and carries over 900 heirloom, non-GMO seed varieties.

And now, we’re in danger of losing this longstanding American institution.

The company will cease to exist at the end of this month if it does not raise money to cover bank notes that are now due. Thanks to a paperwork snafu, detailed on their Facebook page, the company now needs to come up with one million dollars in the next 30 days to cover their debt and stay in business.

Many of the plants and vegetable varieties we now grow in our gardens are there thanks to Landreth introducing them to this country. For example, Landreth introduced the tomato (then known as “love apple”) to home gardeners, and later went on to develop yellow tomatoes. Many of us grow ‘Bloomsdale’ spinach — this variety is also a Landreth introduction. And those colorful zinnias that adorn many of our yards? Brought to this country by Landreth after a trip to Mexico in 1798.

Why This Matters

Seed companies are becoming more and more consolidated, and, for the most part, consolidated under giant companies like Monsanto who would love nothing more than to completely control the seed market. As these conglomerates take over, they decide to only produce and sell the seed that they deem most profitable. This means that variety in our food supply is quickly dwindling.

If you love the flavor of heirloom vegetables, and like knowing that you aren’t growing GMOs in your garden, we need to keep these small, independently-owned seed houses in business.

Read the full post at TreeHugger

3 responses to “Help Save America’s Oldest, Heirloom, Non-GMO Seed House

  1. Wondering aloud:

    I wonder if, rather than paying the ‘ransom’, it wouldn’t be better to just hunt down and kill the kidnappers.

    Oh my baby, my baby, they took my baby.

  2. I think they need $5 million dollars. The catalogs are 5 dollars and they need to sell 1 million copies. Thanks for the article. I am going to purchase a catalog or three plus seeds.

  3. geobear7 and rady,
    had to look at http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/home_blog/2011/09/landreth-seed-company-may-close.html
    to get any idea what this is about. sounds like another corporate m&a of a little fish (a good one) being ett by a big one (maybe good or not) or just plain being closed out like walnut acres.
    sounds crazy financially. last minute oh by the way pay our ransom or we are gone? within a few weeks? on debt that was past due in 2009?
    if we were dumb enough to support john mackey at wfmi suppose we can give landreth’s owners a shot. curious to see what comes of this. you wiling to follow through on the story?

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